Not only is Shel Silverstein one of the most beloved children’s authors, he also illustrates his books. He writes wonderful poems sparking imagination and comical drawings that are entertaining for both young and old.
When I was little, I was given “A Light In The Attic” as a Christmas present. His poetry made me giggle. The drawings are so silly. It’s the combination of the two that really brings me back to a simpler time. So, I decided to read a few poems aloud from the very book I received all those years ago.
Perhaps your parents or kindergarten teacher read you children’s books, before you could read yourself. And when they were done reading the page, they would flip the book around for me to see the drawing that went with it. I really enjoyed the soothing sound of their voice that would sometimes lull me into slumber. It must have been my nap-time.
“Sacrifice & Abandon” 🎨 by Dan Victor. 12 x 9” #Watercolor#Graphiteon paper. It began with a photo in the newspaper of an old man…
I had been living at my mother’s house after moving back from San Diego in 2002. I had just turned 25 & moved there to get away from drinking too much. I thought it was seasonal depression, so I needed to go somewhere sunny all the time.
I realized once I was in Cali, I had something wrong with me. I was away from my support network and getting drunk every day with the band. Depression and anxiety had hit an all time high. Why???
I was unable to financially or physically take care of myself, so my stepfather came out and drove me back to NJ. #forevergrateful I had to live with them while I sought mental help.
Not able to work, I started painting again. And watching a shitload of rentals from Blockbuster. I had the unlimited plan, but could take out only 3 at a time. I would watch all 3, drive back, rent another 3 in hopes of finishing them to rent a total of 9 movies in one day… it happened a couple times.
Even though I was catatonic, completely sober & on heavy meds, I could paint.
It wasn’t until I was 30 that I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder by a good psychiatrist that immediately put me on the right meds, after trying many of both.
I saw a newspaper in my local paper of an old man, looking for subject matter to paint. I saw this guy in a band piercing out this window. I connected the 2.
The old man was sad and doing something reluctantly which he new would cause harm, but a ‘lesser of evils’. He was leaving his adult son, but the question remains… why?
My father was absent a lot of the time, but my grandfather filled the void.
Pop-pop. A kind man. So good to us, but always had a similar look on his face. I wondered what he had done to feel the way his face spoke.
The son behind the glass what’s to understand why. It was the question I was asking myself. How can I reconcile those you look to offer passive neglect or absolute control?
This painting attempts to communicate the regret we may feel for something we know will cause harm. And still… not looking back.
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