I am an artist who, for forty years
Has stood at the lake edge
Throwing stones in the lake,
Sometimes, very faintly,
I hear a splash.
– Maxwell Bates
We produce so many pieces of art over so many years and, occasionally, we hear the splash. Most importantly, we hear the splash “very faintly”. After all, it’s a very large lake – countless artists have thrown their stones into it.
None of our work is going to make waves in the lake – at best a small splash. But that is as it should be. We are members of an uncommon family, one that has congregated at this special lake for centuries, adding their contributions to the water one at a time. We are members of the family of artists…
The lake is larger than any of us throwing our stones and accepts each throw with equal consent. Not too long after the stone has broken the water’s surface, the lake returns to it’s earlier calm and patiently awaits the next toss. It teaches us that there is no need to hurry, no need to become attached to our stones, no need to take aim when throwing. Listen to the lake…
I, for one, intend to continue to visit this lake. The sound of that faint splash is all I need to know that I am where I belong.
Beautifully said, Bob! I feel myself soothed to see you (and no doubt, many others) we are belonging to what Robert Henri said once: the brotherhood of art… No need to hurry, or become attached of our “stones”, no need to take aim! sound so zen, I like it, I feel it’s the way it should be…
Of course, that doesn’t totally anihilate my “pride, and my relatively modest fame-thirst or my need to pay the bills… But then we are, most of us, a nucleus of contradictions, aren`t we… Da-Nu meas yes-no in my native tongue… And I do not think I`m so special all those contradictions aren`t speciafically mine`s… But, really, it`s very well said and soothing… I wish I could be totally that way…
A wonderful text, Bob. It really moved me to tears… one more small splash in the lake!
Wow. I LOVE this image… and love the thought that the splash WILL happen, and it doesn’t have to be huge. Thank you!