“The secret of life…” –James Taylor

The Clock by Philip Guston. A MoMA ecard.

“The secret of life is enjoying the passage of time.”–James Taylor

The painting on the left is called “The Clock.”  I understand that Philip Guston stopped painting abstracts around 1960 and started doing more realistic works.  I was initially attracted to this abstract because I love strong colors.  I have also been, most of my life, intrigued by clocks and the passage of time.  Imagine my surprise when I realized the title of the painting.  So I started really scrutinizing and trying to figure out why it would be so titled.  Try as I might I cannot see why he called it “The Clock.”  The more I look at it the more it looks like a devil.  A fiery devil.  I admit that I know next to nothing about painting.  Could the artist have intended it to look like what I see?  I have no idea.  The only correlation I can draw between a clock and what I see here is:  The devil makes me do it–waste time, that is.  Those of you who are old enough will probably realize that I borrowed that line from Flip Wilson.  Those of you too young to remember Flip, you missed a delightful comedian whose alter ego was a woman named Geraldine.

The clock is ticking.  In my last post I was asking, “Who am I?”  Today I think how I spend my time is far more important.  Whoever or whatever I am, I can enjoy the “now.”  That really is all I have.

“Spend the afternoon.  You can’t take it with you.”–Annie Dillard


5 thoughts on ““The secret of life…” –James Taylor

  1. (of course some things take more than a day…but you know what i mean. deal with your pain, feel it, understand it….and then get up and do something. sometimes i think having stell was the only reason i didn’t dive into a terrible depression. she really kept me focused on the present.)


  2. you know what mamaleo? that is exactly what i have been learning. i feel that i am so many different people at different times. i have decided that how i spend my time makes me feel way more grounded than my ever changing moods and emotional explosions. i also get caught up in what others percieve me to be (aka amy. i still hate that she thinks i’m a terrible person for getting divorced. makes me soo sad.) BUT when i look around and see what i am doing, what i have accomplished…no one can argue. great, happy, healthy kids. respectable job. wonderful friends. you know? i think how we spend our time is really important. and if we need time to nurture ourselves, so be it. do it through rest, art, reading…etc. NOT feeling sorry for ourselves. spending time feeling mopey cannot last more than a day or so. then you beat yourself down even more. read, sew, make me a new afgan (hahahaa) but do something you love.
    sorry so long. i love you.


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