Remembering Gratitude

edition of 231
8.25″ h x 3.5″ w

remembering gratitudeGolden-orange
fluttering ribbons
glow brilliantly
dotting
banks and meadows
gardens and slopes

Gentle gusts of wind
lean the thin, frail stems
w e a v i  n g
their lacy foliage
into the arms of their
Sisters of the field

remembering gratitude detailFully open to the heavens
the joyful blooms
grow and glow in utter ease
as they receive the rhythmic
waking and sleeping
of Mother Sun

In their
easy radiant fluttering
quietly
they ignite
contagious, growing smiles
well beyond, yet within
the soil of their roots

remembering gratitude alternative view

opening
closing
blooming
growing
glowing
leaning
resting

May you

open
close
bloom
grow
glow
lean
and rest

Remembering Gratitude
R e m e m b e r i n g
all is truly well

My intention for creating Remembering Gratitude was to deeply speak to the inner spirit of many people while igniting a ray of collective remembrance, joyfulness and renewed, whole-hearted gratitude. Inspired by the California poppy (once more), and using my signature vessel form, it radiates its message of gratitude in a delicate, glowing band of twenty-one poppies.

According to The Herder Dictionary of Symbols, the number twenty-one is “the product of THREE times SEVEN. It is a holy number in the Bible and a symbol of divine wisdom.”  Other sources reference the number twenty-one as a number of perfection and as a sacred, divine number.  This symbolism of divine wisdom resonated, to me, as the true essence of gratitude: divine wisdom lived as an ever- flowing spirit of gratitude.

Herder also suggests the following symbolic attributes of the poppy as the “symbol of the earth and also of forgetfulness and sleepiness.” When reading The Herder reference, I understood more clearly why the California poppy, though not popularly toted as a symbol of gratitude by either the masses or gurus, continues to intuitively speak to me as a perfect expression of gratitude.  I suggest that it is our sleepiness and forgetfulness that longs to be re-ignited – our forgetfulness to hold a genuine gratitude for all of life’s blessings, events, experiences, and beings. We see problems rather than opportunities or guidance. Habitually we judge events as good or bad, as if we ourselves hold the ability to clearly see the vast inner-connectedness of all life. We leave little room for possibilities we cannot immediately see.  In hindsight, most of us often can see the gifts of certain events that at the time appeared to be isolated hardships. In time, we often see at least a glimpse of the pure, flowing, and higher purpose these ‘hardships’ offer. Apparent ‘hardships’ turn the soil for unimagined blooming.

california poppy sketch Singularly, the poppy is lovely.  Yet their beauty swells dramatically when fluttering together in a field of golden brilliance. And I pondered, as I sculpted, if we are not quite the same? Witnessing the poppies bloom and glimmer collectively easily brings joyful appreciation. Effortlessly, they respond to the Sun with pure ease.  We too glimmer – shine far more radiantly – when we are fully open to the Sun and willing to bloom. The Christian Biblical reference “Where two or more are gathered together in my name, there am I…” points to the Power that effortlessly and miraculously lifts each of us, and all of us, simply in our willingness to wrap our arms around one another in response to the Sun.

When we allow ourselves to accept, in purest gratitude, the entirety of our lives we find not only a rich sense of peacefulness, but also a natural and authentic connection to all other life.  The stem of a plant is that which roots and feeds it from the earth. Even the gentlest gusts of wind bend the delicate poppy stem, weaving its foliage into her sisters of the field. Imagine how much more effortlessly we might intertwine our arms with our brothers and sisters – all beings, all of nature – if we simply allowed ourselves to gratefully lean with the wind, and open to the Sun while being fed from the earth. The wind is the Spirit of the Higher Realm and for me, a reminder of constant, perfect movement over which I have and need not have control. In embracing the Wind, we burst the balloon of illusion – the illusion of needing to control. Letting go of believing we need to control clears our vision to see both the seeds and blooms already alive.

Remembering Gratitude is offered in an edition size of 231 pieces (the sum of the numbers one through twenty-one).  May it bloom renewed and whole-hearted gratitude to the 231 persons giving home to one, and may it ignite a ray of renewed gratitude to all who pause in her presence.