The Skjald

I found this quote I had pulled from a book I read and written out way back in 2010, and I wanted to share it.

“The skjald is,” he says, “the chosen lookout of life who must reveal from his mountain what he sees at life’s deep fountain. When gripped by his vision,” he says further, the skjald is “neither quiescent nor lifeless but, on the contrary, lifted up into an exceptional state of sensitiveness in which he sees and feels things with peculiar vividness and power. I know of nothing in this material world to which the skjald may more fittingly be likened than a tuned harp with the wind playing upon it.”  The hymnist Gruntvig quoted in Hymns and Hymnwriters of Denmark by JA Aaberg.

The skjald in Danish is a poet but moreso, one who speaks truth of the surrounding world even when others don’t want to hear it, or in ways that others can’t always understand.  It is a definition difficult to translate into English, but I love this metaphor of a tuned harp being played by the wind.  I feel very connected with this entire description.

Liberty for All – A Poem

What have we done to Fellowship?
Where’s the love for our fellow man?
The insular lives we now lead
Means that we don’t do all we can
No more living the Golden Rule
Each for theirself, so weak, so small!
No help for your neighbors, nor hope!
It’s one for one, not one for all.

Can we e’er find Equality?
So elusive, it seems to hide.
It’s us verses them ev’ry day.
To walk this path, always deride.
Rather judge a person theirself
By thoughts, actions, and their deeds.
Instead of what we still look at:
Gender, race, sexuality, and creed.

Whence has flown great Intelligence?
Where have our brilliant minds all gone?
No more knowledge for its own sake,
The focus is on rich gains alone.
The latest big consumer toy
Or vanity pills down our throats
Learning reviled, hated, in vain.
Party lines are our only quotes.

How can we now achieve Justice?
That lovely and resilient song?
Impartial code for all to see.
Two rights can never make a wrong.
No more destruction or violence.
Each working to remove that stain.
Natural rights for ev’ryone.
The end of strife and futile pain.

Who knows how to speak out the Truth?
Unbiased and clear as a bell.
And could we even recognize?
We may not know and dare not tell.
It still is there for us to hear.
All it takes is for us to start.
The clarion sound can ring out loud
If we carry it in the heart.

Who now remembers Liberty?
To get it, will you make a stand?
Rights and responsibility,
Alway together, hand in hand.
Never yet in our history
Have we seen this, but let’s begin.
To grow beyond our current fate,
Search the mirror, dive deep within.

Copyright 2017, Kat Micari

Illustrations for Poetry Collection – Pencils are Almost Done!

Penciling is coming along really well now for my illustrations.  I’m going to share one illustration all the way through my process.  Well, not all the way through.  My rough sketches are VERY rough, and I don’t really like sharing those.

This particular illustration started out by being simply the flaming sword of Truth, but it didn’t seem visually interesting enough, especially as these illustrations are going to be in gray scale (washes of black ink).  So I went back and read my poem a few times and came up with the following.

Sword of Truth with SerpentsNote: this image has been darkened in Photoshop so the pencil lines show.

The three-headed serpent have bindings in the “see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil” bent.  I roughed out some scaling on one of the serpents in order to get a sense of proportion but will add the rest with ink.

I tend to work maybe a little too heavy with my pencils, but I’ve embraced that as just being part of my process and adding to the overall completed work.

Thanksgiving is next week, so I may not get to starting to ink until the following week, but I’ll share my progress as I go!

State of the Nation

I have not watched the presidential debates, and I have been avoiding social media like the plague for hours after.  I choose instead to read the transcripts the following day and then investigate the lies told by both sides.  With the internet, it is surprisingly easy to do so.  I shouldn’t be surprised that more people don’t do this research, but if I scroll down to the comment section on any news article, I can clearly see that it isn’t happening.

This has been yet another very ugly political race.  Emotions are running high on both sides.  As someone who desires Truth-with-a-capital-T above all else, I find the lies and the spin put on facts very hard to bear from both sides.  I find the name calling from both sides ugly.  And I find the divide and conquer tactics from both sides very troubling.  And I fear that no matter who is elected, the United States is going to lose.

We don’t have leaders in politics right now.  We don’t have any visionaries.  We don’t have any people willing to look to the future and the present at the same time.  What we have are two very flawed political parties with their hands very deep into the pockets of big business.  What we have are people who keep trying to put Band-Aids over a gaping belly wound.

I lean towards the Democratic side on several issues (although I am surprisingly a “true conservative” on several others), but mostly because the current Republican stance on women frightens me.  Though frankly, I’m disgusted by both parties at this point.  Neither party supports common sense or actually getting to the root of problems.  Neither is above manipulating people.

I honestly feel like if you want to be a politician, you should automatically be disqualified from ever becoming one.  I’m sick of being told that I need to choose “the lesser of two evils”.  We deserve better as a population.  We need to get some smart, creative people making decisions, and we need to work together across party/generational/race/class lines to succeed as a nation.   The question remains though if we’ll ever be able to do that.