It’s very likely they will instead begin to experience,
And in real time,
And if they’re out there dancing with life
Instead of securing themselves against it,
There comes a very real threat to the security of something else.
Fiddler Jones by Edgar Lee Masters
The earth keeps some vibration going
There in your heart, and that is you.
And if the people find you can fiddle,
Why, fiddle you must, for all your life.
What do you see, a harvest of clover?
Or a meadow to walk through to the river?
The wind’s in the corn; you rub your hands
For beeves hereafter ready for market;
Or else you hear the rustle of skirts
Like the girls when dancing at Little Grove.
To Cooney Potter a pillar of dust
Or whirling leaves meant ruinous drouth;
They looked to me like Red-Head Sammy
Stepping it off, to “Toor-a-Loor.”
How could I till my forty acres
Not to speak of getting more,
With a medley of horns, bassoons and piccolos
Stirred in my brain by crows and robins
And the creak of a wind-mill–only these?
And I never started to plow in my life
That some one did not stop in the road
And take me away to a dance or picnic.
I ended up with forty acres;
I ended up with a broken fiddle–
And a broken laugh, and a thousand memories,
And not a single regret.
But instead what remains when there are no secrets remaining.
During my final year of graduate actor training at the University of Delaware’s former Professional Theatre Training Program, I took up brush and ink painting. During rehearsals, when not acting, I would quickly paint scenes from the production I was part of on cold-press watercolor paper no larger than a postcard.
Of the many hundreds of sketch-paintings I did, there were only two that painted themselves.
These two remain sacred to me, and reminders of the gateway before which I stood many times… never crossing the threshhold fully, though poking my head through unknowingly from time to time.