Apifera Farm - where art, story, animals & woman merge. Home to artist Katherine Dunn

Apifera Farm is a registered 501 [c][3]. All images ar©Katherine Dunn.





Wednesday, December 03, 2008

On your own


Years ago,
I did
a series of
memorial paintings to various animals I'd see dead on the road. It was about all I could and although it wasn't much, I suspect somewhere it made a difference.

I was thinking about one's last moments of life. It is the one event that as an artist I won't be able to document or share in colors or textures through painting, or in emotions and thoughts in writings. You are totally alone, even if someone is sitting with you. In birth, there's something of the experience that is left over, after all, there's a tiny fingerprint many of us have tucked in a drawer. And you cry. You share your first breath with the world. And even if you are experiencing a walk in the woods on your own, there is something of the woods that comes back with you. Even if you say, "I went for a walk today", that's sharing it. When you die, that moment is internal, and the next moment is...not here.

I'm not expressing myself that well. I am behind from the past holiday and guests. Perhaps the one relief of death is that it's one thing I can't document and put out there. The experience will be completely mine. Strangely comforting.

6 comments:

coloredsock said...

i just read an amazing book about a woman's life (fictional) that ends with her passing but done in an extraordinary way. i finished it last night and woke up thinking about it. so wow. the red tent. you may like it.

Apifera Farm said...

Cool, kind of eery that your finished it about the time I wrote that post. [scary music plays in background]. WIll check it out! Thanks Henny Jennie Mama!

Tai said...

What a beautiful tribute. Whenever I see small creatures dead on the roadside I can't get them out of my mind. I often see deer grazing right on the edge of the freeway and it makes my heart leap in terror for them. If there is a special prayer to keep them safe, I bet you know what it is.

Terry Busse said...

I agree with you that the "next moment is not here", but I think it is somewhere. It may be right next to "here".

I know when my beloved black lab died, when he took his last breath I absolutely felt "saw" his essence or energy rise from his body.

You are right death is a mystery... maybe we share out last breath too...

I love your little squirely
Terry

Apifera Farm said...

Hi Tai and Terry- I cringe at animals near roads too. Sadly, the roads and cars came after their ancestors. I once tried to help a 1/2 dead possum to die, nearby. Half his face was gone. I was scolded profusely by my farier - but he was really suffering. I couldn't finish him off though, and lay him near the river. - Death is just another interesting mystery. While I don't relish it, I'm not afraid of the after here stage. I only hopw I go with dignity, able to create to the end, with nature and animals nearby. It's the ones we leave I think that bring us anxiety. I like that thought about the last breath, Terry. Having been with animals that died, never a person, I know how moving that is.

farmlady said...

You did express yourself very well and I understand what you were saying. Not knowing is why we need to live in the present moment. All else brings speculation and fear even for folks who think they have the answers. Your not alone. Death is a big place. Sometimes I find an answer in the eyes of animals that live here with me. I think it's about paying attention, being who you are and unconditional love.

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Thank you for reading! The farm and my art/writing keep me hopping, so might not respond immediately. Thank you for understanding. ~Katherine & Apifera ~