Sunday, April 10, 2011

Flicks of Sky

Flicks of Sky - (c) Faith Pray, 2011

I don't sail much. Okay, never... unless you count riding the ferries. 

But living on a peninsula 
means boats, and boat people.
Lots of them.
It almost makes me want to be one. 
Not a boat. A boat girl.

Violet Sailing, (c) Faith Pray 2011
It's like my teenage dream of becoming a sheep farmer. 
(I guess that would more accurately be shepherdess.)
When I was sixteen I saw a painting of a young woman flanked by sheep, 
standing in the middle of a serene pasture. 
The sky went up and up, the hills paled behind her, 
and I fixated on that sheep girl for days. 

I want to be her. I want to live her life.  I want to be ruggedly beautiful and wear flow-y skirts with a laced-up bodice and a woolly vest and have sheep follow me around.
Here's the problem to the sheep girl fantasy: 
I am desperately allergic to wool. 
I get itchy, swollen hives all over my skin and creeping into my throat if I even brush against wool.
I get the itchies just thinking about wool. 

Let's just say I was sheepish when I realized it would never work.
Fountain, (c) Faith Pray, 2011

So there you have it. No romantic life of the shepherdess for me. 

Do you ever do that? 
Fall in love with an idea or an identity that is miles from who you are?

I still do, all the time.

If only I had known when I was sixteen that 
sampling identities is part of what makes a writer. 

It's part of that "putting yourself in someone else's shoes" idea...

sinking deep into reverie, 
becoming that shepherd girl, 
feeling the light warm your sun-beat skin, 
breathing in wet earthiness from those woolly companions,
settling under flicks of sky
until your feet grow character roots. 

Whist, (c) Faith Pray 2011
I don't have sea legs; I get green gills when I whiff too much eau de poisson;
so I don't think I'm a candidate for boat girl
but I can dream,
and scribble. 


Jan Morrison said...

wonderful drawings, wonderful thoughts! Yes I do. I'm a pirate girl and a cowgirl and always a circus girl. I want to live on a farm not just a place with a few chickens and I do sail with my sweet patootie but I prefer to canoe...
that's why I like writing - I can fall into other lives for a while.

Anonymous said...

Those top two boats are beautiful. You've caught the freedom and energy of a boat.

Faith Pray said...

Jan, canoeing I think I can do! I love your sentiments! Love that you write, and know what I mean about filling up other shoes.

Jacqui, thank you!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Ah! You are a boat girl in spirit--those drawings capture all the free, wild wonder of it. I absolutely love the pictures and the post and couldn't agree more that this what writers are made of. :)


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