Monday, February 8, 2010

You Can Use My Soft Words...

From Deena – invited by Mary Ann to post!

Well, I’m smack dab in the middle of a series of 6 (12x12) mixed media pieces that are each inspired by a poem or song lyrics. These aren’t just any words. Oh no. These words demanded to jump into my paint and onto my sponges, move me to tears, open and humble me, and resonate deep. I challenged myself to put words into every piece, which triggered all my fears of looking "crafty". So I have been playing around with inkjet transfers, scratching, scribbling and stencils.

The piece here includes layers with stencils, acrylic paint and molding paste, sanding, and hand writing. The techniques I used in the “pillows” on top started out as a monoprint (gold), an inkjet photo printed (flowers), then ripped/sewn and put on metal mesh.

This first finished piece of the series, entitled “A Cushion for Your Head”, was inspired by a poem from the great Persian and Sufi poet Shams-ud-din Muhammad Hafiz (c. 1320-1389). This poem reminds me of that feeling of falling into the softest place – cushioning me from anything hard, rough or tough – when I just need the warmth and comfort of huge down pillows, fuzzy blankets and cushy comforter. No hard surfaces here – just curling up into the gentle softness of being totally taken care of. Where have you found softness lately? Where did you find a “pillow”? Here is the poem…happy creating…wishing you soft places of comfort when needed…

A Cushion for Your Head

Just sit there right now

Don’t do a thing

Just rest.

For your separation from

From Love

Is the hardest work

In this


Let me bring you trays of food

And something

That you like to


You can use my soft words

As a cushion

For your


- Hafiz


  1. Beautiful poem, a beautiful work to accompany it Deena. I identify with your techniques and subject matter because they are similar to my own. I also constantly fight with my use of mixed media and the "crafty" connection you slipped into your post. How far is too far to push your process or should we even be thinking such thoughts?

  2. oh, hafiz! your chosen poem reminds me of the comfort of a favorite of mine by him called THE GIFT. soothing and loving.
    and you so captured that in your piece, no fear, for sure. layered and warm and pillowy.

  3. The soft spot for me has always been spirit, what we are,and those I meet along the road who share my views..not that I'm always right, but a similar voice is good to find!
    Beautiful poem, post, thank you...

  4. ...some like it hot, I like it Red! Just beautiful, Deena.

  5. i like - very much. both the art and the poetry. the color and the flow. thank you!

  6. I had to think of where I find the softness but I would have to say in my very early morning meditations.
    Lovely words and artwork.

  7. Hi Deena, nice to meet you and your wonderful collage! It makes me think of a song: "Looking for a soft place to fall".
    Lucky you are, having a friend in Blue Sky.
    But then you already knew that.
    Great to see your work here!

  8. love these words of hafiz! and the piece is perfect for the words - fantastic all around! great post!

  9. Thank you for your great feedback!

    Margaret - I say, let's just go for it. I will if you will!

    Babs - love the words to that song. Is that Allison Moorer "Looking For A Soft Place to Fall"? I found it here - sweet.

    And, absolutely, how wonderful to have Blue Sky in my life.

  10. oh how I love Hafiz one of my favorites, and this piece is so beautiful!

  11. Beautiful work, love the process, layers and text.

  12. Very nice piece. I like the thought of the words in each of the six.

  13. The comfort of a soft pillow and chair with a good cup of tea is heaven.

    We all need a place we can retire to and read a book, have our favorite brew or just sink into contemplation and ultimately a nap.

    Thank you for sharing one of your favorite poems and your most recent beautiful artwork with us.

    Warmest regards,

  14. YES, that's the one, thanks for the link. I couldn't think of the singer's name.

  15. Yes, that elusive connection between poetry and visual art work-- back and forth-- trying to get poetry in the art, and trying to get visual imagery in the poem
    both beautiful here

  16. Very rich and warm, this makes me feel. And the poem, makes me sigh...reminds me of "With you, my heart rests on a cushion of happiness"

  17. Love the cushy words, and the ravishing, rosy work is kind of Valentiney.