• sharonkingston

To Know the Tender Gravity of Kindness

My son helped me record this reading of Naomi Shihab Nye’s wonderful poem today.  Kindness springs from empathy, as so beautifully worded here, and a sentiment I wish to reflect upon during this season.

Kindness by Naomi Shihab Nye

Kindness Before you know what kindness really is you must lose things, feel the future dissolve in a moment like salt in a weakened broth. What you held in your hand, what you counted and carefully saved, all this must go so you know how desolate the landscape can be between the regions of kindness. How you ride and ride thinking the bus will never stop, the passengers eating maize and chicken will stare out the window forever.

Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness, you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho lies dead by the side of the road. You must see how this could be you, how he too was someone who journeyed through the night with plans and the simple breath that kept him alive.

Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside, you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing. You must wake up with sorrow. You must speak to it till your voice catches the thread of all sorrows and you see the size of the cloth.

Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore, only kindness that ties your shoes and sends you out into the day to mail letters and      purchase bread, only kindness that raises its head from the crowd of the world to say it is I you have been looking for, and then goes with you every where like a shadow or a friend.

#kindness #naomishihabnye #sharonkingston #spokenpoetry

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    SHARON KINGSTON

     

     

    studio/gallery

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    360-739-2474 or

    email sharonkingston@me.com

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      SHARON KINGSTON STUDIO

      203 PROSPECT ST

      Bellingham WA  98225

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      Sharon Kingston is a Northwest WA oil painter who uses the properties of her medium to create paintings that respond to both the atmosphere of her surroundings and poetry. This method of looking inward and outward and, in the moments of painting, finding her way on the canvas is her approach to creating paintings infused with poetry and the memory of landscape. The atmospheric element of her work is a testament to her desire to create spaces that are undefined, contemplative and allow room to reflect and accept uncertainty. Poetry, by nature open ended, is used both in the conceptualization of the work and as a part of the studio practice. The words of Rainer Rilke have informed Sharon’s work for many years, but she also turns to contemporary poetry when it resonates with her life. She uses layers of transparent color, reveals forms by concealing and unearthing pentimenti and suggests elements of landscape in her process.