"...I seek truth & beauty in the transparency of an autumn leaf, in the perfect form of a seashell on the beach, in the curve of a woman's back, in the texture of an ancient tree trunk, but also in more elusive forms of reality. Sometimes working on an image in my darkroom, the soul of a person appears, the emotion or vital essence of some object; at that moment, gratitude explodes in my heart & I cry. I can't help it. Such revelations are the goal of my work."
- Isabel Allende, Portrait in Sepia
And stepping into the new year, a pause beckons to us from the shadows. "Slow down!" it whispers, inviting us to sit quietly, our focus shifted inward, reaching into the center and returning us to what is real, to what is original. "Original has two meanings," writes John Berger in Our Faces, My Heart, Brief as Photos. "It means a return to the origin, the first which engendered everything that followed; and it means that which has never occurred before."
In this new silence, the world (for but a moment and forever) still, may we learn to hold these tensions -tensions between the first things and that which has never occurred before, between the past and the present, the distance from and longing for - side by side, in a way that is no longer contradictory.
A piece of inspiration I caught recently on Studio 360- Origin Lessons by Amy Bender. Have a listen:
I like to think of winter as a time of rest here on the farm. And now that the garden's covered over with snow, aside from collecting wood, it is. With more time on my hands, over the last few weeks, I've had a chance to look into funding for our up-coming projects. And a few days ago, I submitted a project to Rain Bird's Intelligent Use of Water Award. The award is, in their words, "an interactive grant program that awards funds to water conservation and environmental sustainability projects that promote green spaces. A global initiative, any Internet user can submit a project via the Intelligent Use of Water Awards website at www.iuowawards.com and promote it within his or her own community. All projects can be anonymously voted upon by visitors (one vote a day per project, per individual user), and the projects with the most votes will receive funding from Rain Bird according to their funding category.”
To help us meet our project goals (see goals below), we need your vote! You can vote once a day through March 1st, 2011. To vote:
• Click on the following link: http://www.iuowawards.com/Projects.aspx#search
• enter Amazing Heart Farm into the search
• click on the thumbs up sign to vote for our project
To increase our chances of winning, please pass along this information to anyone you know who might want to help out!
OUR Project Description:
With the help of her husband, community volunteers & a Project Orange Thumb grant through FISKARS, in the spring of 2010, Elizabeth Weller established Amazing Heart Farm, a Certified Naturally Grown CSA just outside of Gettysburg, PA. By harnessing the therapeutic benefits of creative and physical work, we aim to provide a safe space for members of the local community to engage in emotional work and healing, to gain access to community resources and to learn to use personal and community supports while providing themselves, their families and the local community with locally grown, fresh food.
OUR Project Goals:
To irrigate our crops, we currently harvest rain water and overflow from our well from two 275 gallon containers. As we expand our production, we’ll be using more water and we’ll need to have an irrigation system in place. We’d like to use the Intelligent Use of Water Award to build a small irrigation pond that will be store the overflow from our well and to build a corresponding irrigation system for an acre of Certified Naturally Grown vegetable production.
To learn more about what we're doing, please visit the Amazing Heart Farm web-site.
In the mean-time, please vote!