Posted By Susan Bernhardt
Degas1

Kay walked past Edgar Degas' imposing bronze sculpture, "The 
Little Fourteen-Year-Old Dancer" into one of two rooms dedicated 
to Degas at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. She moved from one 
ballet painting to another, completely absorbed in his work, 
observing his depiction of movement in the paintings and his 
choice of unusual viewpoints, angles at which ballet was never 
intended to be viewed.

Degas showed the world of the ballet with truthfulness; the ideal 
verses reality, the beauty but also the difficulties of achieving 
perfection.

Kay sat down on a bench in front of "The Rehearsal of the Ballet 
Onstage" totally mesmerized. The painting grew more complex with 
analysis. Her eyes moved during a random glance with the movement 
in the painting.

As Kay focused on the painting, she began to hear the sound of 
strings. Turning around, she saw only the museum guard standing in 
the doorway. She stood up and moved closer to the painting. Degas' 
technique of using pastels in long, undulating lines over the base 
coat of oil, gave the painting the same vibrancy and energy of the 
dancers. Kay watched as the ballet dancers stretched in rehearsal, 
then saw the purity of the dance itself, romantic and feminine, 
the precision of their footwork, the carriage of their arms. 
Suddenly the layers of tulle netting in one dancer's full skirts 
blocked the view of another's foot movements. 

Kay stretched her neck to the right to see the details of the 
blocked dancer's pointwork, then slowly she inched over to where 
Degas was painting. The detail of it did not escape his eye. 
Working quickly, Degas captured the dancer's footwork. Kay stood 
behind Degas watching the dancers and watching his depiction of 
them. After putting the finishing touches on his painting, he 
turned around and looked up at Kay. 

"Tres belle!" she whispered to him. 

He smiled, his eyes bright and spoke but a single, "Merci." With a 
contented smile, he turned back to his canvas.

An enchanting melody drifted  across the rehearsal room. Degas 
completed his name, then put his brush down.  He wiped his fingers 
on a soft cloth that was attached to his easel, then finished 
watching the dance. Looking at Degas' profile, Kay saw a single 
tear escape from his eye.

"Kay...Kay, I was wondering where you were." Kay looked over to 
her left and saw Phil, her husband. "There's a Monet two rooms 
over that I want to show you." 

Kay hooked her arm through Phil's. As she left the room, she 
glanced back at "The Rehearsal of the Ballet Onstage" then blew a 
kiss.
 
Posted By Susan Bernhardt

What a day for a daydream...Thinking about what to write for my April blog, I glance at my cheery sunflowers on the kitchen table and admire their simplistic beauty. The sunflower in art has become nearly synonymous with Van Gogh. He characterized his fondness for the flower in the spiritedness of his sunflower paintings. My eyes veer from the splashes of yellow, out the kitchen window to the sparkle of pure white, untouched snow from our Wisconsin winter.

Under the snow, blossoms a daring spring. --Terri Guillemets.

I daydream of my garden flowers in unabashed brush strokes and dabs of greens and purples and whites. The memory of their fragrance fills me with pleasure and lingers in my mind and heart, even on this cold morning. The blossoms of our flowering crab tree will soon unfold a cloud of color, brilliant pinks amid the greens; prime subject matter for the impressionist.

The sentiments of those who tasted the world with their eyes, are painted in a favorite poem, written by William Wordsworth who conveyed the movement of art through words.

I wandered lonely as a cloud That floats on high o'er vales and hills, When all at once I saw a crowd, A host, of golden daffodils; Beside the lake, beneath the trees, Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine And twinkle on the milky way, They stretched in never-ending line Along the margin of a bay: Ten thousand saw I at a glance, Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they Out-did the sparkling waves in glee: A poet could not but be gay, In such a jocund company: I gazed---and gazed---but little thought What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie In vacant or in pensive mood, They flash upon that inward eye Which is the bliss of solitude; And then my heart with pleasure fills, And dances with the daffodils.

And now I'm lost in a daydream...

 
Posted By Susan Bernhardt
The story of A Manhattan Murder Mystery (An Irina Curtius Mystery) begins the day before Valentine's Day and goes into March. Although this is a mystery and not a romance story, Irina has a lot to say about love. 

"I know what love is, it is because of you." – Hermann Hesse

Valentine's Day is a great holiday for many reasons. It comes after all of the "good will towards men" has worn off. We take time to celebrate love. And love is love, right? Love is never wrong.

It's quite wonderful that we take a day to think about the people closest to us, that makes the other 364 days worth living. Love need not have words, only the beating of hearts. But the expression, "I love you," can send one flying high. There is no message more joyful then those three magical words.

Happy Valentine's Day!

"Who, being loved, is poor?" – Oscar Wilde

 

 
Posted By Susan Bernhardt

 

tree
 

 

I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.          ~ Charles Dickens 

 

Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays from our home to yours!

 
Posted By Susan Bernhardt

Thanksgiving2
 

I am grateful...I am blessed. 

I am grateful to God for life and for the life that I have. 

I am grateful for my family, my extended family. To my parents who showed me love and taught me that all people have worth, not just those who look like me.

I am blessed and thankful for my husband my best friend, for our dear sons and their wonderful partners. For our adorable grandson. I love my family. 

I am grateful for friends, new and old. And being an author, I am grateful for my readers, some of whom have become friends. 

I am grateful for large things and small things: art, health, joy, love, creativity, reading, music, travel, chocolate, coffee...okay, I'll end this. 

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and weekend. 

 

 

 

 
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