Georgia and Me

inspired by Georgia O’Keeffe’s “BLACK DOOR” series, ceramic,earth,bone, 30x30x4″

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I attended a lecture this morning hosted by THE GEORGIA O’KEEFFE MUSEUM by a woman who served Miss O’keeffe as librarian, housekeeper, companion and eventually caregiver as she became blind.

To hear her tell it, O’Keeffe was quite the toughie; prone to acerbic delivery in conversation and the non-mincing of words.  She was a challenging broad, shall we say.

We most often hear of Georgia in her prime , modeling unfettered independence sans family and expected norms of behavior

As she gifted the world with her way of seeing; lifting and shoving us all off the comfort of our familiar.

During the lecture I became self-reflective listening to this woman’s stories of Georgia aging often without grace;   frustration, bitterness uncontained, not so friendly or even less welcoming than her healthier days.

Access to grace is very hard won in the company of pain, fatigue, dissolution of body, mess and overload of general living stuff.

These things I am beginning to know.

Used to be that even when I was overly tired or weak I could always pull up grace enough to ensure my intimates worry about me was eased and a conversation could be had without the back round screech on the blackboard I could hear in their minds, concerned for my welfare.

Sometimes I sit here and Grace is cruising around town in her cherry red restored convertible Thunderbird with the top down miles from me.

I know not when she’ll return.

She never follows my orders.

This is when things get a bit lonely as I have very few I trust to visit myself upon when overtaken by our inevitable corporal dissolution.

I pull the covers over my head.

You think you’ll not be touched, I know.

It is a surprise how primal and naturally gritty and inconvenient just below the surface of normal we are.

The greatest gift those who love me can offer is   S…P…A….C…E…

With no judgement.

And the knowing that all we each can count on is change.

I might be nicer tomorrow.

Or not.

Or I might be.

And that would be nice.

For everybody.

My comportment is now quite unreliable.

It is what it is.

If you see me without a painted lip you’ll know to perhaps steer clear.

If I hadn’t the juju to pause and apply…I likely don’t have it for you.

comments

8 Responses to “Georgia and Me”

  1. Barbara McDaniel on July 5th, 2017

    Truth.

  2. Maureen on July 5th, 2017

    you are so honest and clear. I appreciate that about you. S P A C E.
    it is all good. ????

  3. Alexandra Eldridge on July 5th, 2017

    So appreciate your honesty. Love, A

  4. Debra on July 5th, 2017

    Keep pushing that comfort envelope, Xena Warrior Princess.

  5. Karen on July 6th, 2017

    thank you

  6. Adele Rosen on July 6th, 2017

    I will always have space for you my friend xxxxx

  7. Jenny on July 6th, 2017

    You once quoted Anne Lamott who was saying “Grace always bats last” . and she does, And your honesty to say you are having a shit day is a gift to all who love you because they can tell you if they are having a rough patch too. Then the world softens and loads are lighter. Xx to Em too

  8. Susan on July 9th, 2017

    How lovely to run into you on the Plaza this morning. What a wonderful reconnect. I share your feelings around Grace . And I admire you greatly!

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