“The object isn’t to make art, it’s to be in that wonderful state which makes art inevitable.” –Robert Henri
And how elusive that wonderful state can be! I’ve been journaling and reading and trying to conjure up that elusive state for the past few weeks. To no avail. So I’ve been tackling some long overdue house chores instead. Yay.
Yesterday I worked outside. The air was unusually cool and refreshing, the garden in full summer bloom–daylilies, hostas, coneflower, spirea. I started up the weed eater and cleared out an area where I want to expand my garden. I whittled around the chicory plants, with their tall stems of short-lived blue flowers, and the cardinal flower, which is not yet blooming but whose crisp-edged leaves I recognize like the face of an old friend. I surveyed the vegetable garden, which was dormant for two years and has recently been cleared of the six-foot weeds that laid claim to it. It was nice to just be able to walk in the clear air among the vanquished weed stalks. Victory is mine! cried the gardener. Then a hawk flew low, no doubt scoping out my remaining chickens.
And then I realized, this is how to cultivate that wonderful state. Duh. Off the internet and outside! Gotta work on that mindfulness-outside-in-nature thing. I don’t know how to do it, really. I’m an internet junkie. I think I’ll come clean, quit cold turkey, and turn off the wifi at the house when the kids go to school next month. Or maybe I’ll do it tomorrow and see what happens.
How do you manage that attention wrecker called the internet? Are you a master of self-control? And how do you cultivate that wonderful state?