19 October 2016


by Andy Weddington
Wednesday, 19 October 2016

How difficult it is to save the bark of reputation from the rocks of ignorance. Petrarch 

Page 38 of my Merriam-Webster Dictionary lists five definitions for bark - three nouns and two verbs. 

Four define that which dogs and people do or something to do with that outer covering of a tree and the last covers the rigging of a ship with three or more masts (my learn something new every day moment).

Last week, about in the wild with brush and rod, my aim was to escape politics for awhile. 

But metaphors abound.

Cottonwoods, leaves, as hair, turning a rich gold, brought to mind Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Trump. 

One particular small yapping dog sounded like Mrs. Clinton some months ago on the campaign trail. I forget why she barked but it was doggone silly.

And several big dogs with husky loud barks, woofs, made for thoughts of Mr. Trump. He sometimes barks but not like a dog.

Despite my intent to focus solely on a couple of tools - paintbrush and a 9'9" fly rod - I was distracted, at times, thinking about politics - mostly all the barking; the noise (by candidates; campaigns; talking heads; emotional citizens). 

Trout, rainbow nor brown, do not bark. 

At first blush, there's no comparison between the beauty of a brown trout and brown (tree) bark.

But look closer. And longer. And the beauty of (tree) bark emerges.

Painting a brown trout, from life, is not feasible with my approach to painting. And since catch and release my way, rod, not brush, catches trout.

On the other hand, painting a tree, from life, fits my approach to painting. In fact, trees are damn near the perfect model - with exception of movement by breeze they are stationary; do not require breaks; do not complain; and change rather slowly (and not noticeably over the course of a couple hours).

So thinking politics and bark, and that one President is noted for chopping down a cherry tree, it was only logical I paint bark. 

I found interesting trees and painted them.

And thought. 

Following are but some of last week's bark paintings ...

And a couple paintings, bringing to mind yellow hair, of the cottonwoods ...

So, what's the point here?

No matter how hard I tried to expunge politics from time with brush and rod, impossible. 

The yapper, a confirmed liar, will again lie. Overwhelming evidence proves she is flea and tick infested. And has the mange. Bite worse than bark. Pet at own risk.  

The woofer, accused of being a liar, will again deny. Allegations only. Bark worse than bite. Pet at own risk (but less risky). 

Tonight the two (candidates for President), cottonwood yellow hairs both, take stage for the last time, before Election Day, to debate. 

Bark they will.

Essentially, as to our future Executive Branch, we face a fork - a known and an unknown. 

The known not good.

Saps, beware the rocks of ignorance. Find a cottonwood (oak; maple; sweet gum; any hardwood) and bang (your) head against the bark; for clarity.

The unknown vows goodness.

Budding thoughts - for action (not hope). 

America, lest we fall, must return to her roots. 

Why not go out on a limb?

Post Script

Paintings: 9 x 12 in. acrylic

1 comment:

Robert Barrow said...

A great piece Colonel. It brought much reflection. Quiet reflection. I hope our Nation gets this branch of government right as the other branches will depend on it lest the leaves of our citizenry turn brown and fall.