Category Archives: Nonfiction

Cleaning the Basement

The Door in the abstract drawing in Cleaning the Basement

“The door” in the abstract drawing mentioned in “Cleaning the Basement”

Why do we always put off cleaning our basement, porch or sewing room, guest room? The rooms that seem to accumulate clutter. Why do I keep pushing and shoving – shoveling things in until I can’t get any more in? Then it becomes an overwhelming task .and it takes great will power to even start cleaning it.

Invariably, when I get up enough will power to start, someone will come to the door, or call on the phone or I have a Dr. appointment or errands and the day is gone.

After trying to clean my porch for several days, I decided a ‘me’ day would be a good way to relax. I needed a painting day. I had been organizing my art equipment;  I had all kinds of paints; oil, water, fabric that I had forgotten about.  Also brushes, felt pens, crayons. I had no excuse not to pursue my art.

I got a space ready on the dining room table, covered it with newspapers, got my paints, felt pens and paper out . I started drawing whatever random shapes popped into my mind, like an abstract painting. My daughter in law had done this and she hadn’t  painted before, and hers looked like a stained class window!

My shapes were all squiggly and loopy. I chose felt pens in bright, bold colors, to color them. The colors seemed to belie my mood as I followed the swirling, looping lines, seeming to go nowhere.

Near the bottom, there appeared a space I hadn’t filled in. I started filling it in with a dark color, then outlined it.. It was a dark rectangular – I added shades of grey, brown and purple so that it receded and drew the viewer in. It drew me in and I wanted to enter…and yet I hesitated. It became a doorway within a doorway leading to who knows…

It bought to mind the basement that a friend and I had been talking about earlier as a metaphor for the mind.

The Doorway in the picture represents the entrance to the deep recesses of the mind. We need courage to brave the darkness and face the unknown monsters there, as we start to descent the stairs…who knows what we will find?

                                      by Clara Betty Deese


Reflections on Thanksgiving


Late Night Reflections after eating too much food  – Well, like everyone else today, I celebrated Thanksgiving-the only truly American Holiday.  I would have been with family except my hubby and I were  sick, so the food was bought to  us, so still the family was involved and of course food-which seems to be the star of the show – even though we – I use the term loosely, talk a good talk about losing weight, and the virtues of being healthy,  few of us follow up on it when temptation stares us in the face .  I admit I’m just as guilty as anyone else, believe me!

The point I set out to make, which started my pondering, is the fact that we have got away from what Thanksgiving is about – supposedly giving Thanks to God- in our opursuit of pleasure. In fact it seems like most holidays have turned into an excuse to pursue pleasure instead of how they started out. Just think of the different holidays and see if any of them are celebrated for the same reason that they originally started out.

For example, take the 4th of July-does anyone really think about the reason we celebrate, I doubt that very few do-it’s an excuse for a party, to get drunk with friends, set off pretty fireworks and EAT.!  Where does the being thankful (again!) and mindful of our Freedom come in? And don’t even get me started on Christmas, which will soon be here and for most people can’t be over soon enough-except for the opening of presents and consuming too many calories, and yet we say we want to get out of debt and lose weight. I hear so many say they are tired of the commercialism – that Christmas has lost its true meaning. What ! want to know is what are we going to do about it – not say about it? What am I going to do about it?

But that is a subject for my next blog. Until then. This is enough to chew on for now.  Later.

Oh, one more thing -don’t you go in the kitchen and get that other piece of  pie! For Heaven sake, save something for tomorrow!!