The Altar in my Soul

The Altar in my Soul

a prose poem by Joy Murray

I built an altar in my soul for you.  I adorned it with things you made, things I made, dried flowers, sea shells, stones, vessels and wishes.  The altar has infinite space because I built in my imagination where there are no limits.  The sacred space grows til I can no longer grasp it all.  I conjure you up.

There is a meadow of wild flowers, so bright with color that we are silenced by the beauty as we walk hand in hand.  There is a pavilion built on a pier over dark waters.  We dance there.  We shed our broken bodies and slip into a shared dream, dancing alone, twirling together.  You are so close to me, then you are so far away I can’t see you.

I know you’ve gone back to your real life.  The one I have no part in.  The one where you work so hard to survive the illness you don’t deserve.

I sit with this altar in my wheelchair.  I pour water for the ancestors onto parched ground and wonder which of us will be among them first.

I light all the candles in my soul and roll into my day, knowing in my sad old bones how far away you’ll always be.

I wheel my way into my life, awed by the strange, broken beauty that colors all of my days.

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She never knew what to make of her own unraveling, by Joy Murray

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This blog is brought to you by the generosity of people who support me on Patreon , buy my art, and who support me in so many different ways

Cards and prints on some of my art is available on Redbubble.  

If you find a typo, let me know, and I’ll send you a postcard.

I Love You

I love you.

Three over-said words, often not really meant.  But when someone you love says it to you, sincerely, they are the most powerful words.  I’m talking about platonic love, the love of friendship, the love of someone who you connect with, someone who you feel is one of your adjacent pieces in the puzzle of life.  Click.

This love doesn’t invite you into a bond, instead it sets you free.

Suddenly, all the cracks you have in your broken heart have a purpose — they allow your heart to expand, fill up with sweetness — your heart will not stop expanding.  You understand the truth about love — that the more you love, the more love there is.  Not just for you, but for everyone.

More love means more understanding, more healing, more connection, more life.  It’s like an iron infusion for anemia.  Your strength to love others grows when someone loves you.  All the wobbly and frail parts of your soul get reinforced.

You strengthen.

You can even say I love you, too.

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Thank you for the space you hold in your heart (for me). Collage by Joy Murray

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This blog is brought to you by the generosity of people who support me on Patreon , buy my art, and who support me in so many different ways

Cards and prints on some of my art is available on Redbubble.  

If you find a typo, let me know, and I’ll send you a postcard.

No Known Cure

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No Known Cure by Joy Murray, 8×10″, acrylic on stretched canvas, “There was no known cure/Still she carried on.”

People have told me that they are surprised by the size of my paintings when they see them in person after seeing them on the internet, especially the smaller ones.  So here’s a photo by a coffee cup for perspective.

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This blog is brought to you by the generosity of people who support me on Patreon , buy my art, and who support me in so many different ways

Cards and prints on some of my art is available on Redbubble.  

If you find a typo, let me know, and I’ll send you a postcard.

Buried Blues

For my open studio I painted this piece, but I didn’t really want to sell it.  I think I finished it the day before the show and hadn’t had a chance to study it much.  Fortunately, a close friend bought it, so I can visit it:

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Buried Blues, 8×10″, acrylic paint and ink, by Joy Murray

It was a small piece so I decided to paint a similar one on a larger, 16×20″ canvas.

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Buried Blues #2 by Joy Murray

What do you think?

I revisit ideas in my paintings a lot.  Do you?

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This blog is brought to you by the generosity of people who support me on Patreon , buy my art, and who support me in so many different ways

Cards and prints on some of my art is available on Redbubble.  

If you find a typo, let me know, and I’ll send you a postcard.