I want nothing.
Nothing pleases me.
I celebrate nothing.
I love nothing.
Nothing beckons me beyond the urge to strive,
a constant yen to stave off Zen.
I want no sound, no taste, no smell,
no color, shape, or texture.
Nothing has plenty of nothing,
respite for my senses,
and that is what I want,
for a bit of time every day.
- Velma Lee Barber
I am nearing the end of my journey
And I've been with you through much of yours
I was there when wanting to off yourself
Was still in your thoughts every night
And I'm glad that you stayed around to take care of me
And that you stayed around to let me take care of you
Remember, dear Jamie, you named me Joy for a reason
I am the only animal in your life you got to name
And you named me Joy
You needed more Joy in your life
And I was happy to give it
I still am
I hope that now, as I near the end of my time
You are closer to learning that Joy is within you
Love is within you
Light is within you
Like your beloved Dorothy, everything you need is
Already within you
I still have some time left, so I'll hang around
Until I know that you've gotten it for sure
At least I know that
You will never let anyone
Lock me up in a cold basement again
I AM a feather on the breath of God
Feathers come in different sizes, shapes,
colors and textures
God uses my uniqueness
to radiate the world
I AM one feather, and i delight
in the feather that i am.
I AM a flute through which the
wind of the hours plays music
There are a variety of flutes on this earth:
Different tones, different timbers
God uses my sometimes klunky instrument
to play in the symphony
I AM one flute, and i delight
in the flute that i am.
I AM a being through which the Divine river flows
All rivers return to the ocean,
Taking different routes to get there
God has wound my river on a
weird and wonderful path
I AM one river, and i delight
in the river that i am.
-Poetry and artwork by Dr. Jamie Marich,
based on lines from St. Hildegard of Bingen, Khalil Gibran, and Rainer Maria Rilke
What began as a challenge for an Expressive Art project led to a fun family experience with my most difficult medium. After taking a class at our local library, I decided this was too fun to keep to myself. First, we prepared our surfaces and gathered the materials to experiment with some acrylic pour paintings.
Acrylic Pour Supplies:
Next, we covered the working surface with plastic or newspapers. To keep the canvas out of the run off we, placed push pins on the back (corners) of each canvas. To mix paints, each color is mixed in individual cups with a 3:1 ratio of paint to mixing medium and thinned with water as needed (should drip or flow from the stir stick). Cells are created by adding a few drops of silicone which is folded in a few times. The mixed paints are poured or layered into a primary cup and this is known as a “dirty pour”. Place the canvas on top of the cup in the center while flipping the cup and the canvas over. Allow the cup to sit a few minutes and gradually raise the cup. Tip the canvas from side to side and cover the entire surface. Use stir sticks to wipe dripping paint from the bottom of the canvas. If the sides are not completely covered, dip your finger into the runoff paint and tap until all white canvas corners and sides are covered.
From the first pour my daughter said, “I feel like I lost myself in this project. It was fun to focus on colors and what naturally happened. There was no need to try to control the design, but just let what happened-happen.”
“It was a relaxing experience and fun to watch what happens as the cells appear. I am looking forward to making the next one.” This from my husband who doesn’t consider himself artistic.
Second pour, my daughter said, “I really needed this!” This project was such a success with my family members who are excited about trying new methods and taking the time to relax, create and embrace art with each other.
Suggestions for bringing Acrylic Pour to the clinical setting:
The formulas are a mixture of acrylic paint with an extending medium. The following pictures were used with the “dirty pour method”. Paints were mixed using a 3:1 ratio of mixing medium (floetrol) to paint. Three to five colors were selected. I would recommend joining an online support group to determine which combination of mediums you prefer and introduction to new methods:
The earth and sky are one
Just as Jesus and Hanuman are One
How could one ever go back to sleep
After being this awakened?
How could anyone hear their name
Shouted in anger again
When they've finally heard it
Whispered with such love.
The earth and sky are one
Just as Jesus and Hanuman are One
The truth finally found me
May I never get lost again
Photography (of Jamie) by Ola Sobanski
Old with new
Child with Adult
Kid like heart
It is tough
Truth with Lies
oil and vinegar
They don’t mix
Sometimes holding on
Who does she want to be?
What is real?
What is her present moment?
32 next week.
What makes her go on her own?
Playing with going
No one else
Fireworks Beautiful colors
Just wanted to see.
She drove through traffic
Testing her ability
She felt fear and she felt...
Guilty for going alone
and no one directs this life anymore.
She just cannot wait for someone to say “lets go”
She’s got perseverance.
She’s got Community Damn it.
Go try. Break fear.
Wallowing chokes out growth.
Transitions are meant with tears
and that’s okay.
Didn’t see that one coming.
Space opened just for you to feel
other people’s presence
She opened-up her
Not everyone sees.
How she copes
reads and challenge
that not easy.
They have been trying
and she dropped her wall
She doesn’t want to live in fear
that’s not cool at all
She’s worth more than
Thankful for a moment
spoken into her life
Speaking to her “let them control their own boundary”
And the body is hers for purposeful slowing down reasons
Not to ignore the fact asking for help-- is in that lesson
Logic with emotion
Won’t work hand and hand
and hers is human
Expression is in discovery
It will come through play
Allowed to create
Silence and with speaking
Silent no more
She works to speak.
Yes, it’s tough
And well hell
She meant to be heard.
Slow and steady
She gains momentum
Nothing to prove just gains for herself
A Voice, Freedom, Living, and Personal
Blessed to be among
people who see this when she has fallen
And helps dust her off
and stand her back on solid
Painted rock image featuring the expressive arts therapy practice of Irene Rodriguez
"Bacchus, how are you so in the moment?"
"What is moment? You mean chew and stretch? Yawn and sigh?"
"Yes - Those! How do you do all that?"
Bacchus then yawns, repositions his head, and closes his eyes,
thinking to himself,
"Human is asking weird questions again. No wonder she needs me to protect her."
Rose Kormanyos, LMFT is a Dancing Mindfulness facilitator and student in the Certificate of Expressive Arts Therapy program; she (and Bacchus) are based in Cincinnati, OH.
Don’t be fool by me
I may smile
I may seem to have it all together
But inside I may be falling apart
I may seem to have all figure it out
But inside I may be playing by ear
I don’t have all the answers
I’m looking for myself
If you see me around
Please, just call my name
-Irene M. Rodriguez
In the supreme quiet of morning
I can just be
Sitting on the deck
Surveying the landscape
Both internal and external
It's good to have land
Especially when I can walk on it
Breathing fully into
The possibilities of each day
The water neutralizes
The fire within me
And I swim freely
Refreshed and renewed
Returning to sit once again
How sweet it is to be home
My anchor, my ground
My renewal and hibernation
The wayward come and go
Filling my space with delight
My home lives and breathes
Ebbs and flows like the seasons
The common thread is
Profound gratitude for having
Learned to come home to myself.
Dr. Jamie Marich
Curator of the Dancing Mindfulness expressive arts blog: a celebration of mindfully-inspired, multi-modal creativity