Resilience through Art

We did not sleep all night at the wake, and sauntered at dawn past the grove of mango trees to sit under a tree. The wind was cold in the first break of morning and you could see the sun spray a touch of yellow on the glassy surface and the sides of our faces, and I felt grateful for art in my life.

Photo Credits: Claire C. Fiel/ clairelyhappy

Cabadbaran River, Agusan del Norte Mindanao Philippines

Mark leaned on the tree and fell asleep. Sleep is like art, in a way, like a blank canvas your mind flicks paint at; it makes us stronger inside and resilient, and I was glad he got to rest his weary mind for the first time in two days.

I examined the flow of the water inland and examined the colors on the opposite bank. I painted a childhood memory superimposed across the body of water with a hanging bridge I remember crossing with my cousin Dharyll when we were kids.

Photo Credits: Mark F. Villanueva/ clairelyhappy

Cabadbaran/ Kauswagan Hanging Bridge Agusan de Norte Mindanao Philippines

We were just kids. We only wanted to play, but we didn’t really have friends. Anyway, we never complained and I was happy to be alone with my craft, with Dharyll, and I was always up drawing things, creating; living in art.

That afternoon we went to Caasinan beach just before sunset and I smiled when I saw the foreshore with stones red like molten spews spread across the sand. I was still smiling and Mark asked, what’s up? But I knew I didn’t have to answer, and he’d understand, sort of, what was going through my mind.

Photo Credits: Mark F. Villanueva/ clairelyhappy

Caasinan Beach, Agusan del Norte Mindanao Philippines

We faced the ocean and let stones skid, and they would disappear underwater in the golden sunset. We’re old souls, he always tells me. We like to keep our lives simple and free, and I squatted on the sand to sketch an old picture of my cousin and best friend Dharyll when we were just kids playing at the beach.

Photo Credits: clairelyhappy

Caasinan Beach circa 1980, Agusan del Norte Mindanao Philippines with my cousin Dharyll


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