9 February 2017

The Show Your Soul Campaign, Back Out Friday To Main Street And Beyond

The Show Your Soul Campaign

Friday, Maria and I return to the streets of our town and some nearby towns to put up her "Show Your Soul" posters, an artist's statement to the world about how to live in times of discord and anger and argument. Maria made a "Show Your Soul" quilt last week which she was reluctant to sell, but did.

This is her art, and she can explain better than me what it means. She is getting a flood of requests to purchase the posters – she will sell that at cost – and will deal with the posters when the returns from India in several weeks. She can't deal with it now, she leaves for Kolkata on Sunday.

I am excited to be the driver and helper for this project. To me, the poster is the antithesis of rage and argument, or paranoia and hysteria and polarization. "Show Your Soul" to me means to live by example, not rage, to live your life with love and compassion, to support what you believe is good in your own individual way.

To this end, and at her own expense, Maria put her art out there and moved her feet. Real politics are not generally done in Facebook arguments, but out in the real and physical world.

That is what she is doing through her art, it is what I am doing through my writing, life and photography. For both of us, our politics are out lives, we live by example, not argument. This is what these beautiful posters – featuring one of Maria's favorite goddesses – are about. You can follow this story on her blog. More tomorrow. We hit the other side of Main Street and beyond..

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Eyes On The Storm

Eye On The Storm

I have two workaholic dogs that do not mind sitting out in 8 degree weather with fierce wind blowing and slow and sleet falling o them. They both would have happily frozen to death rather than moved an inch or taken their off of the sheep. I made them come inside and thaw out for awhile, then we went for a walk in the woods. I am exhausted. They are not.

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Red In The Storm: Border Collies And Wolves

Border Collies And Wolves

All dogs are descended from wolves, even those "furbabies" people love to cuddle. Of all dogs, border collies are the most closely genetically linked to wolves, their prey drive and stalking behaviors are very similar. The final steps of prey drive, the grab and kill, have been bred out of border colliies, they stalk and hunt, but rarely kill. They are bred and trained not to ever seriously harm a sheep, and certainly not to kill one.

That is about all that separates them from the genetic composition of a wolf. Sometimes, The wolf comes out in Red, as when he is stalking and controlling sheep in a storm. He pays no mind to the weather or snow or ice, he is focused and the sheep looks at him and sees a wolf. That is how a border collie gets sheep to move, that is precisely the trait Fate seems to lack.

The sheep sees the wolf and moves in response.

It is beautiful to watch Red work in a storm, this morning, it was brutal out in the pasture, high winds, ice, sleet, bitter cold and driving snow. Red never blinked. He is a remarkable creature, as determined and wolf-like with sheep as he is intuitive and gentle with people.

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Fate Graces The Vet’s Bathroom

Fate Graces The Vet's Bathroom

If you go to the bathroom at the Cambridge Valley Veterinary Service, Fate may be looking down on you, her portrait hangs there. Dr. Suzanne Fariello asked to use several of my photos of Red and Fate on the farm, and I was delighted to agree. Fate was going to hang in one of the examining rooms, but Dr. Fariello, who knows her well, decided the bathroom was the right place for her. I agree. She looks just right in there.

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Red In The Storm

Red In The Storm

I had to retreat into the bar, the snow and ice were covering my camera, I saw Red standing on guard in the snow and had to try and catch the scene.

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