Imperfection

I hit “Publish” and rushed out the door.

We had such a busy Saturday, but I was feeling the tyranny of the urgent regarding the A to Z Challenge.

“Just a minute! Just a minute,” I called to my family as they were heading out the door at 7:30 AM.

I wanted to edit some more. I wanted to delete and reword and create something that wouldn’t make me cringe when I pictured other people reading it.

But I hit “Publish” and ran.

And worried.

And cringed.

We had a great day — family breakfast at a diner with 10 Zaengles present.

Slow Art Day at the Stone Quarry Hill Art Park (followed by Slow Food prepared by local college students).

The Stacks (Slow Art Day)

“Stacks” (Slow Art Day)

Artist David Harper talking about "Stacks" (Slow Art Day)

Artist David Harper talking about “Stacks” (Slow Art Day)

"The Trees Shall Be My Books" -- working title for the piece

“The Trees Shall Be My Books” — working title for “Stacks” (Slow Art Day)

That particular installation, “Stacks,” has always been my favorite piece at the Art Park, and now even more so.

We spent the afternoon into the evening babysitting our grandson — who is the cutest baby ever.

By the time we left their house, it was 12 hours from the time we had left our house in the morning. Since I didn’t have my computer with me, I couldn’t obsess over the post. By the time we got home, I was exhausted and went to bed.

Yesterday — Sunday — I was determined not to spend the day worrying over my blog. And I didn’t. Mostly.

This morning, I went to the orthodontist with Laurel, and did no blogging.

By afternoon the letter “I” was looming, lurking, taunting.

I’ve seen the meme — There is no “I” in team — or something like that, and I kept thinking there is no “I” in art either.

Jennifer Trafton Peterson has talked about art as a gift that we offer. Each time I have heard her say those words, she uses the same hand gesture — cupped hands that move from her heart outward, like an offering of something precious.

But I used to bake cookies for extra income, and more than once, in the chaos of my kitchen, forgot to add the baking soda. Molasses crinkles don’t crinkle without the baking soda. They come out of the oven as hard little balls that are nearly inedible. Those cookies were so imperfect that they ended up in the compost heap. That’s all they were fit for.

The other day I brought my father to a concert at the nursing home where my mother had lived. The flutes were out of tune with each other, and the band struggled with tempo, but they played the old familiar songs and the people sang along with “God Bless America” and “O Susanna” not caring one lick about the tuning.

Their music was their offering, from the hearts of the musicians to the gathered — and appreciative — audience.

I recognize through them that art doesn’t have to be perfect to be appreciated.

But sometimes art is like cookies without the baking soda. It really belongs on the compost heap.

My heart poem has gone the way of inedible cookies.

Sorry.

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11 thoughts on “Imperfection

  1. I think that you have to be prepared for imperfection when you create anything, otherwise you’d never create. But editing and deleting are also necessary!!

  2. Aww! Some days are like that. You publish a blog post and run! And sometimes you experience a bad orchestra concert or leave baking soda out of cookies and blog about it. I guess it’s all in a day’s work. 🙂 Glad something good came out of it!

  3. Pingback: Juggling | Hot Dogs and Marmalade

  4. So…you are art to me. Words are art. Your words motivated me to see if I couldn’t find where my words were hiding! I found them this morning, waiting in Grace. Love you, dear one.

  5. The artist is usually the only one who is the most unhappy with whatever they do, the one most likely to hear the mis-played notes in a recital. The rest of us just enjoy.

    I’m sorry you didn’t like your little poem. I never measured its perfection, only whether or not I enjoyed it. And I did. 🙂

    • Hmmm… well, maybe I’ll go back and look at it. It’s in a virtual compost heap where I can easily retrieve it. I wish I could put my finger on what I didn’t like about it — it wasn’t the near rhymes. Maybe the haste with which I wrote it never allowed me to warm up to it sufficiently.

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