These came from a vision I had in the night, awake but a bit dreamy, in contemplation. There was a heavy weight, like a come-a-long hook, placed on my heart. The chain fell limply, but heavily, at my feet. The weight of the hook and chain were cracking the shield that, long ago, I had put over my heart. I could clearly see the cracking pattern. I knew who'd put the hook there, and I also knew that I did not need that shield any longer. It was a good thing to have this particular rigid heart breaking, and to feel the supple, vibrant flesh moving and breathing beneath!
More than a year later I saw the vision again, during a massage. I sensed that I could make this image in porcelain, by cutting the cracking pattern partway through a slab, and then pressing, stretching it from behind.
When I did do this, the cracking pattern - to my surprise - looked like tree
Something big and strong and beautiful can grow from a breaking heart.
I continued to make these female figurine for the wall, with heart roots, and sometimes other heart images. I made one with the Sufi winged heart during the time I was making the music video - with that luminaria image so fresh and strong. It reminded me of when, long ago, I'd helped a hummingbird that had come inside a house with many windows. I had to win its trust, hold it in my hands, and carry it to the door. When it flew away, I felt my heart fly forward with it.
So I made these two pieces, with Black Mountain clay and porcelain birds, in May 2010. I took the pieces out on a Friday, and epoxyed the birds onto the chests of the figures as planned on Saturday.
I decided to put the pieces safely in a box.
On Sunday, my daughter found and injured bird. She asked for a shoebox and how to provide it water and food. At some point I noticed the bird in the box, with its head tucked deep under one wing. I placed a paper on top of part of the box so that it would have some darkness, a safe cave-like feeling.
About an hour later, the bird started flying around the house. This caused the 2 13-yr-old boys in the house to laugh uproariously. I followed it, to catch it and/or lead it outside. It flew up onto some tall books on a top shelf in our bedroom. I used a thin book to lift it up under its feet, and soon it flew off the book and onto my chest, right over my heart. !!!! I was greatly enjoying the moment (and the timing of it), but decided that I eventually needed to get a photo if I could. In reaching for my camera, the bird flew away again, to the top corner of the bookshelf. I lifted it up again, and a second time it flew onto my chest. (2 sculptures, two times flying to my heart.) I took a few pictures inside, and then walked outside so that it could be free. It stayed calmly on my heart, looking at me with its one good eye, for about 15 minutes.
Birders have told me it is a young Swainson's Thrush, rare in these parts, and rarely seen anywhere because it stays in the treetops. It has a beautiful song.
After the bird flew away (and a piece of my heart with it), I took the sculptures I'd completed the day before out of the box and hung them over my bed. With a huge smile on my face, I should add.
Blessings on you, dear bird. I am grateful for your visit, and for your trust.