The father of a friend died yesterday. He was an artist as I am, but we never met. My friend was with his father on his last days and he photographed his tools and shared the photos, photos of paints and a paint box, of screwdrivers and socket wrenches. If one didn't know better, one might call it a collection of tools, but makers, whether they are artists or machinists or carpenters or potters or weavers, do not have collections of tools. They have tools. The images were not of the neatly peg boarded tools of the home handy man or the clean, ordered and oiled precision of the machinist. They were jumbles and clutter with only a loose categorizing that made it clear that they were not ignored discards. These were tools used, not tools collected. I saw importance in those images. The hands of the craftsman extend from the very core of the being, and while we can't always decipher that hand to soul connection, the tools of the craftsman can give a good hint at what lies within. I could see the creative spirit in the semi-organized clutter of the tools and paints. It was the creative side speaking out about how rummaging around a bit for the right tool has creative value. Even the simple handling and shifting of the wrong items as one seeks the correct tool is of some unmeasurable value. It might not be efficient, but it always gives time for thought, it always opens the possibilities of a different direction. The photos said, "artist".
And then, I find myself at Gulf Pond. The thoughts have buried the distance. I have not been here since we moved into the house. It has been a good day for birds and Gulf Pond, a salt water marsh of clam and oyster beds, brings a change in species. Here are the buffleheads, Canada geese, and great blue herons that I don't see at the house. It has been a good day for birds and I have seen the usuals and, in the case of the long-tailed ducks, heard those that I haven't seen. Today, I take no tally. It is their day to not be a count, but rather to just be birds.
The act of seeking, whether things are found or not, leads to somewhere.