According to plan is a hope rather than an assurance What is the shape of the future in these foggy times? A book that voyages into untried possibilities may be a timely occurrence in this moment of quiet unknowing. We must keep our distances, wipe all handles, and wash our hands but can, at least, grasp a book.
Keep hope alive. The conventional colour of hope is green: leaves, grass, moss that shine when covered with raindrops wept for an uncertain future. The colour of the future is not painted by age-old convention. What colour is a murky future? We return to our personal palette. Mine is mud-coloured, streaked with brown, yellow and maybe a tinge somewhere of hope, a smidgen of green.
Hope lies somewhere, in medicine, in acts of kindness, a chance phone call, a knock on the door, an unexpected email, and more…? Trees glimpsed in parks, lining streets, eggs hatched under satisfied clucking, chicks fed by plump woodpigeons looking too heavy to fly. Yet they do, almost miraculously like those in the sky at the end of medieval refectories, painted in the late fifteenth century in the time of Ghirlandaio in Florence.
As I write my pair of overweight wood pigeons have alighted rather clumsily on the wisteria leaves covering the pergola. They disappeared and returned. This must be their second lot of eggs. Ghirlandaio and his contemporary painters were not wrong. These overweight birds can fly from tree to roof to pergola. Come evening they are silenced by a singing competition between a blackbird and thrush, nests whereabouts unknown, but probably near the wall where the clematis is battling with honeysuckle, both almost suffocated by wisteria. Do I leave them to battle it out, maybe to death, or cut one free and curb the others? My preference is for the honeysuckle which is flowering now. It will be a time-consuming task but not an unpleasant one.
In lockdown manifestations of nature take on a greater significance. When a book is launched, one is drawn into a current of expectation, flying into the unknown future with the fledglings. Why do humans paint, sculpt or write, mostly for little profit? Why not just look at what is happening and rearrange it into frames of one’s own imagination? As far as we know, no other species does. Do humans create because they sense a reality beyond themselves and need to communicate it to others – a sort of spiritual survival?
So here is a taste of a just-published book, mine. Try it, or even leap into the book and start the journey!