Who are you, father of Abraham, Isaac, and the kid on the corner stuffing his veins with heroine?

Who are you, Mother Nature, creator of lilacs and birds and brain tumors?


In my quest for faith I find questions, and in my quest for answers I find a blank space which I call my canvas.


A canvas upon which I paint while the world is going to hell in a hand-basket. A canvas upon which I dribble colors and make pretty pictures while my mother is dying from brain cancer. A canvas which feels the heat of my unanswered prayers as I smudge black and gray lines criss-crossing dividing and conquering nothing except the endless bleakness of this ecclesiastical life.


Ecclesiastes: my favorite book of the Bible. Because of its raw rejection of clichés and its bold face staring straight into the sorrows of endless nothingness. Because of its blank page with neatly typed words screaming &%*$# at a world that claims to need answers when all we need is silence.


Silence in which to breathe deep and paint pictures of everything inside so were cleaned and emptied and ready to carry on to another, unnecessary day until finally we reach that point of absolute finis when someone closes the book and our paintbrush reaches out and keeps on coloring on a world weve long since left.


My mother and I live in a gallery of glances which speak volumes. Glances which heal wounds which will eventually kill us unless the world gets there first. So as we sit and die, we paint.


Art is the blood on the cross long after he lay in the ground. Art is the blue in the sky while the bombs shatter lives below. Art is the grip of my mothers hand on mine as we walk towards her grave with me resisting all the way.


Art is, when everything else is not.


surf’s up!

the-coast-013.jpgthe-coast-contd-018.jpgfor allie and i, life has been a ‘beach’ lately… literally. 🙂 we’ve been cruising (and bruising :)) on the northern coastal waves of australia. last friday we took the train up to ‘nowra’, a small coastal community where we stayed with allie’s friend amanda and visited the white sands of jervis bay… a surfing, whale-watching paradise. never have i seen such tranquil blue waters, nor such perfectly white sand.

 that sunday allie and i got to record a CD for our mother (who’s still very sick with brain cancer)… then we took the bus down to Kiama, where we parked our bags and behinds in a lovely little motel, bought some groceries, and baked in the warmth of the area. the sun was brilliantly bright, the surf was up, the rolling green hills sheltered us as we lay on the beach and watched humpback whales leap over oceans blue. on monday we took a taxi to “7 mile beach” where we learned how to surf in two hours 🙂 our instructor was a man from Bali who was patient and adept at the board… we both learned how to ride the waves… it was splendid. i didn’t actually expect to get up on the board, but with Duncan watching the waves and telling us when, surfing became a synch (sort of :))…

 we’ll be heading back to Kiama on Thursday; we can’t stay away. this time we’ll be trying our hand at fishing. then it’s back to canada on sunday…. as much fun as backpacking and tanning is, i can’t wait to return to my cute little home in blyth, nor the cute man that awaits me there.

 with love… em.

the land down under

so far…

i’ve seen lots of kangaroos! i took pics of them too. they
were living near our campsite; one night as i was setting up tent they
bounded through our campsite. i looked at them and thought “oh,
they’re just kangaroos.” then i basically jumped out of my skin, and
thought, “oh, they’re kangaroos!!!”

i drove 10 hours yesterday and we went from the south coast surrounded
by beaches and palm trees to the north coast which is full of
mountainous terrain and beautiful trees. i love it here. the air is
fresh and cool. we’re going to buy fish for supper, and then we’re
going to rent a dvd. tomorrow we’re doing more hiking, then we’ll be
returning the car and taking the train down the coast to visit one of
allison’s friends for a few days.

yesterday after driving so long we ended up in a cozy mountain town called Mount Victoria where we stayed at The Imperial Hotel… an old fashioned place with soft beds and elegant charm.

the trees are bursting into pink and red buds everywhere… it’s spring in the mountains! we’re surrounded by fellow backpackers and wierd-sounding birds.

everyone here is so friendly… they all say g’day, and mate, and
massive. those are the three words they use 🙂

they call gas “petrol” and i’ve had to learn to drive from the
opposite side of the car on the opposite side of the road. they have
signs for koala crossings and kangaroos; instead of “yield” they say
“give way” and instead of “passing lanes” they have “overtaking lanes.”

i’ll tune in again soon… g’day mates! photos to be posted later.