This is the sentence that came to me in response to the background of this page, and it felt like such a true statement for me that when I read it out to my creative writing group last week I began to cry. Who knows why, maybe a deep truth affects me like that. It is true that my life has been largely devoted to music, to singing, to arranging songs for choirs and in recent years to writing songs for our weekly spiritual group Sanctuary. These are kind of like hymns or chants I suppose, originally inspired by the songs of Taize (a Christian spiritual community in France) but not so Christian; more reflecting the universal spiritual ideas and values that many of us here in Byron have….like being in the present moment, mindfulness, compassion, forgiveness, gratitude etc This page began with an undercollage of some sheet music and an old hymn, “How Great Thou Art”. Growing up in the church (almost literally) of course I know all the words to this and countless other hymns, many of which come back to me and sing themselves in my heart, especially when I’m walking on the beach. This background got me thinking about how I still love singing those old hymns and also gospel songs , as well as all the songs and chants we sing each week at Sanctuary. Songs of praise have been a major thing in my life, and I still love them….although, as I said I’m no longer sure to whom I am singing.
How I made this page (for those interested): First I stuck down the music. Then I used some spray inks (Dylusions) with stencils: My Cathedral window stencil AND a paper doily. Sprayed through them both a few times, then stuck the doily (which was quite red by then from the spray ink) in 2 halves on either side. Then I google-image-searched (that’s a verb these days) for musical angels and printed some out. I didn’t know what to do next, the angels were overwhelmed by the background and the whole thing was not……cohesive somehow. The background was a bit busy and needed a focal point so I was delighted when I had the idea to use the silhouette of the little girl. She seems to hold the whole page together and she fits in perfectly with the theme of the words.
This is now one of my favourite pages, probably because the words are so significant to me. I will finish with this quote from Sam Keen, “My Life has been one long song, a hymn to an unknown God” (from “Hymns to an Unknown God, awakening the spirit in everyday life” a book I have had for many years and highly recommend). Blessings to all.