Monday, May 28, 2007
To be brave
When the war on Iraq started 4 years ago, I started a series of tiny paintings, little 'prayers' to all the beings - people, children, gardens, animals, bugs - that were being destroyed, hurt or displaced by a senseless war. Needless war. I was moved by the story of a shepherd in Iraq who had noticed a sheep limping, went to check on it and was killed by a planted grenade. Killed being a shepherd.It made me think of what war would be like on my farm. How scared, distraught, helpless I would feel trying to keep my animals safe, or keep the old barn from burning, watching a field we'd toiled over blown up in seconds. Neighbors we've known, here one day and gone the next. It is impossible to really experience it in one's mind as it must be. It must never leave you.
So I did these little daily prayers, to pray for the safety of people's gardens they had nurtured, or old trees, livestock, pet horses...This is the last little prayer painting from that series. I naively thought my little prayers would help in some way, but I don't know if they have. Perhaps the people that purchased the prayer paintings will be moved to do something too, I don't know. Perhaps if I did a prayer painting for every single person in the world, it would be a different world. So, I will sell this last one, and start again.
And on this Memorial Day, the bravery and sacrifices of all veterans of the past, including my father as a Marine in the Pacific at the age of 17 to 21, must not be overlooked or taken lightly. Nor shall we forget the bravery of all those in Iraq now - and may they know that being opposed to the war does not mean we have forgotten their bravery or sacrifice.