A Satsang

May 8, 2015

A Satsang

Master sat on the hard stone rising above the polished earth patch with a handful of disciples.

He talked about Surrender. The faces he watched held no secrets – he travelled all those paths.

Now a disciple threw himself in front him.

With a merciless foot Master pushed him away, gazed down. In a second, the face of the lad betrayed shock, then anger, then suppression, then humility. Before it left the anger behind, Master’s finger was thrust towards him: “THAT is true! The shit you gave me before that disgusted me! And now you disgust me again. Get out.”
The end

Something came up during my morning reflection. I recorded it here and to give it some discipline, decided to make it a 100 words short story.

From Wiki: 
Satsanga, Satsangam, Satsang (Sanskrit ??????? sat = true, sanga = company) in Indian philosophy means (1) the company of the “highest truth,” (2) the company of a guru, or (3) company with an assembly of persons who listen to, talk about, and assimilate the truth.[1] This typically involves listening to or reading scriptures, reflecting on, discussing and assimilating their meaning, meditating on the source of these words, and bringing their meaning into one’s daily life.[citation needed]

'You've wasted a lot of time. It's all on my blog.'

‘You’ve wasted a lot of time. It’s all on my blog.’

 

I have a dream…

May 1, 2013

I store it all.

And then, there’ll come a time when I sit down on my little island and write my book.

The words will come to me and lay themselves down into lives, emotions, characters, destinies and stories. And spells.

I’ll weave my magic carpet with secret symbols, and hidden messages, with rivers and mountains of energy flowing in and out, consuming a reader, enchanting, changing, transforming….

(Diary entry on February 16, 2010)

Seagull

April 30, 2013

Today, I was looking at the seagull, who lives on top of the chimney 4 metres outside my window, and seeing it for the first time.

It lives on it’s own. There is no room for another one on that perch. It was sleeping with it’s beak on it’s back, sitting so that a light afternoon breeze would slide along its feathers.

The gull looked very handsome and serene and wise. I remembered other times when I admired their idle wisdom, their godly confidence that everything is perfectly alright – no need to fret.

By and by, I decided to unclutter my studio in order to clear path for some new things. Doing so, I found an old notepad with a few diary entries, one of them about seagulls…

February 16, 2010
“The seagulls, they despise us, did you notice?

They laugh at us, looking down on us in their arrogant bemusement, and crapping on us every now and then as if saying: “Yeah? What are you going to do about it, miserable pathetic gits, leading incomprehensible frantic lives, fretting, rushing about down there?”

But of course, they won’t go into the pain of saying all that, because words and thoughts are far too bulky and clumsy to bother. They simply look down at us, bemused.

They don’t clatter their space, as we do. They have a clear unobstructed view from where they are – on the roof-tops, in the air.

“Those creatures down there, – think they – Those which crawl about those complex structures they build to live in – it is curious to observe them occasionally. They often carry food about them. Fun to raid! One has to be cautious, they aren’t as easily predictable as other animals. Overall they are fearful and timid, but every now and then one comes across an agressive specimen…”

When you catch a sight of a seagull gliding on an air-flow, watch it for a while. Notice, it does nothing. There is no need in that act, only pure pleasure…

The blasted thing spends  hours doing nothing, simply enjoying itself!

Art and Sweetcorn

May 7, 2011

In September 2009 my younger daughter Alina came to my studio for an hour or two. That visit led to an illustrated short story “Art and Sweetcorn”.
Here it is:

Illustrated short story "art and Sweetcorn"

Alina Making Art

Sweetcorn is hot this season.

On the way to the studio I made a detour to the Farmers’ Market, but going home in the evening forgot the bag with the goodies behind.

– Alina, I’ve got sweetcorn in the studio. Would you like to come with me to get it?
– Ye-ye-yeah!

Off we go.
Out of the door, turn left…

– Mummy, can we take the shortcut?
– That way takes longer, Alina!
– I don’t care!
– OK.

carry on down The Mint;
up through the inn car park;
right down the cobbled street;
past the corner house with the pigeons;
take the passage on the left;
past the lamp-post;
into the court yard.

Some days my girls like to come to my studio, some days they don’t. Depends.

– Alina, would you like to cook the corn here, or would you rather go home?
– I don’t mind, mummy, I can eat it cold.
– Yes, but it’s not cooked: you have to cook it first.
– Aw… (disappointment strength 8/10). Can I do painting while it’s being cooked then?
– You may.
– I want to do Art.

print_drypoint_artwork1

“Artwork” 1

Sweetcorn’s in the pan.

– Which paint would you like, this (oils) or this (acrylics)?
– I want this one (acrylics).
– There you go.
– Can I have those little rolling things as well?
– Yes, sure. And there is your paper.

She is all settled, painting on the floor;
I am at the table, drawing her.
We are busy doing Art.
Silence.

Short story by Marina Kim "Art and Sweetcorn"

“Artwork” – 3

Sweet aroma slowly fills the room…

– Mummy?
– Hm?
– Is the sweetcorn ready yet?
(glance at the clock)
– No, not yet. Another 10 minutes or so…
– Aw…

5 minutes later:
– Mummy!
– Hm?
– I think the sweetcorn is ready now.
– Uh-ehm…
– Come on, then!
– Okay! – I put the pencil down and get the sweetcorn.

It is hot. I put one cob under the running cold water. Alina comes to the sink to wash her hands.
– Mummy?
– Yes?
– I painted the difference between the Sea and the Soil.
– Oh, cool!

Short story "Art and Sweetcorn"

“Artwork” 2

Hands clean, she is content.
– Can I eat my sweetcorn now?
– Ah-a.
I give her the cooled-down cob, and place the plate with more of them on the arm of the chair. She climbs into the chair. Satisfaction 10/10. Life is good.

Short story "Art and Sweetcorn"

“Sweetcorn”

– Alina, are you going to paint any more?
– Nah-ah.
– In that case, you need to tidy up.
– Arrgghh, Godddd!

Marina Kim

Autumn, 2009

https://www.etsy.com/assets/js/etsy_mini_shop.js//

There was time when little worm-like creatures you now call caterpillars never changed into butterflies. They were born, had their babies, and eventually died as caterpillars all the way through. But then it all changed.

There was this young caterpillar once. Life was nice to it. Day in and day out all was same. All was safe. Many other caterpillars munched away on the leaves, chatting happily to each other. So it went until one day our caterpillar looked around and thought: “I’ve been a caterpillar long enough. Time to be something else.”

The caterpillar didn’t know WHAT it wanted to be yet. “Something completely different!“ – it thought. Deep in its mind it had a vague idea of something colourful and airy. Full of grace. And, oh, yes! It didn’t want to be eating leaves any more (it was rather full of leaves by now). AND it didn’t want to be crawling about in this fat slow body of its for much longer.

Having come thus far in its thoughts, the caterpillar very wisely decided to sleep on it. It didn’t want to be interrupted while having the most important snooze of its life. And so, it made a very strong and cosy bed which went all the way AROUND it. “Hum! How very innovative!” – it thought, and decided to call it a Cocoon.

With the cocoon ready, it went into a long sleep.

Meanwhile it rained outside. Really hard. So hard, that for a while water covered all the land, and the caterpillars didn’t make it. They drowned all. Except one.

The one which was sleeping safely inside the cocoon, having colourful dreams of a new life. The water carried the cocoon, throwing it in all directions, up and down, hoping to smash it against the floating bits of trees. But the cocoon was made so sturdy and light, that it simply bobbed on the surface, giving our caterpillar dreamy ideas of flight.

Eventually the rain was over. Angry currents turned into tame friendly streams. On the bank of one of those streams lay a little brown parcel. The Sun came out and helped the Life to tidy up the mess. All was back to normal and even more beautiful.

The caterpillar now had a pretty good idea of what it wanted to be, but it wasn’t sure HOW it was to do it. “Anyway, time to come out“, it thought, and took a deep breath…

The small brown parcel on the bank of a stream burst open. Out of it came rather a dazed unknown creature. It sat there trying to figure out where it was and what it was. Everything was so different! For one thing, its’ body changed completely. Also it had something wrinkled and wet stuck on the back of it. Trying to see it better, the creature unfolded the things. Wow! Beautiful wings with a colourful pattern. It buttered them cautiously and flue in the air! “I am a butterfly!” – it decided.

Flying carelessly up high, a butterfly noticed some beautiful things of various colours, which smelled very nice. It decided to have a rest on one of them. At that very time the butterfly felt hungry, and realised, that it can drink the flower juice using it’s new long spout! “Great! No more leaves for me then!” – it said.

When time came for a butterfly to have babies, it saw, that they were caterpillars. Which brought back to the butterfly all the happy memories of its’ childhood. The little caterpillars were very curious about the world, but most of all they were curious about themselves, of course. “Mummy, who are we?” – they asked. “Why we are not like you?”
“My darling little children. You are caterpillars now as I myself used to be. But in due time you might choose to change. And you can.”

And so it went since then, that caterpillars have a choice – stay a caterpillar or become a butterfly.

Marina Kim

Seeker and Useless

May 5, 2011

The Seeker asked the Useless:
What’s your use? You are useless!
That’s my use – being useless, – said he. – How else would you find your generosity?

“What a fool! Useless fool!” – thought the Seeker and rushed off in search of use he can bring to the world, while the Useless remained there, under a tree, in idleness.

Marina Kim

Marina Kim original prints. "Generosity"

"Generosity"

Stories have many layers. Recently, I realised that the meanings of my dreams revealed to me in layers, in time. Same goes for artworks and stories.

Creativity is like dreaming aloud, or dreaming materially.

A layer of this story openned up to me right now: don’t be affraid to be useless.

Big Issue

May 5, 2011

Fist time he appeared on the High Street, the town felt sympathy and bought a few copies. It is a charitable town. His face was round, rosy-cheeked and looking towards building a new life.
– Big Issue! – deep pleasant voice boomed up and down the street effortlessly. It sounded the way a butler would announce the cocktails – perfect pronunciation, but he didn’t speak English.

The town run out of interest quite soon. He sat on a plastic box, dosing occasionally – the epicentre of the pedestrian-free zone – us, the towners discretely crossing over to the other side.

Marina Kim

This story is really about one day. A sentence even, which caused a change in me. But it is necessary to start a few years earlier, when I was 11.

The secondary school. Autumn term started with 4 classes in our year. Soon after the beginning of the term one of the teachers left, and her class was split between the remaining three. We had the intake of about 10 extra pupils, and on the day they were brought in I fell in love.

He was the handsomest and the most charming boy there ever was. His mother was an actress, a beauty with black hair and brown eyes. Marat was very like her in features, but he had soft wavy blond hair and grey-blue eyes. He was the only one of that colour in the family. His step-dad was a typical Uzbek of dark complexion, as well as his little half-brother. Marat once told me, that he took his colouring after his real father, whom he never met.

He was The Popular Boy of the year. All the boys wanted to be his friends, and all the girls adored him. I loved him.

And I never even thought of hiding it. I asked teachers to be sat at the desk with him, which they gladly did. During the tests, I’d work on my own sheets, and then help him with his variant. If we were sat apart, I’d throw the answers inscribed on tiny bits of paper across the classroom when the teacher wasn’t looking. He knew I’d try my best to help him, if he had to answer the lesson at the blackboard, and looked out for my help. He got used to rely on me. My devotion was apparent, quiet and unquestionable to the degree, that there was never even any teasing me among the classmates.

He was friendly with everyone, and very entertaining. He told jokes, made funny impersonations, clowned about on every break-time. He was happy and adorable. He was handsome and funny. He was supple as a snake and loved acting. One enjoyed simply watching him move. He was quick-witted, always up for a laugh. He was good at sports. Not brilliant academically simply for the luck of interest. He was interested in attention, which he had plenty.

Wasn’t long before he made his preferences in girls clear. I didn’t expect it to be me, and it didn’t change the way things were. I still helped him unconditionally, and was the same with the girl he liked.

In general I am and always was a quite sort. A thinker. Which externally might have looked like I was sad, or even sulking. Perhaps, I was. Until one day three years later.

It was a school outing, and at the end of it we were allowed a free run in the park. I was as usual on my own, sitting on a bench. For a minute, on the bench opposite landed Marat with one of his friends, who might have had a soft spot for me. At least couple of times I saw boys teasing him and pushing him towards me, when I was passing by. But I might have been mistaken. At the moment the two of them were sitting three meters away, facing me and the other boy whispered something in Marat‘s ear. In reply he got an irritated: “To heck with her, with her ever sulky face!”

I cringed as if slapped and longed to disappear on the spot. They could only be talking about me.

A sulky face…

I didn’t want to be a sulky face. I wanted to be happy and fun. And that’s what I became. A bit of a shock for the teachers though. Always a good example and obedient pupil, now I was skipping the lessons with the others, sometimes even initiating the escape, talking back, behaving arrogantly. But I became popular with my classmates.

That didn’t buy me his love, but at least he joined in the things we did with the other pupils, which I now usually lead, and he never again said that I was boring. I became a mate.

In a year time, I returned to the school after Summer holidays completely cured. I had a new sweetheart. I even had had a kiss. Marat had changed too. He wasn’t a happy lovable boy any more. He became kind of angrier, edgy. Smoked a lot, often the pot. The boys, they all did, but he was the one who really meant it.

His love turned to another girl too. By the end of the high school I guess the two of them were more advanced in the practical knowledge of love-making, than any of us. Their relationship, I heard, lasted after we all left the school, but he was becoming increasingly difficult.

When we were 20, all of a sudden he turned up on my doorstep with that very friend of his, the whisperer on the bench. Asked me out for a walk. I was surprised and intrigued. Somewhere along the way we lost the other boy. Marat didn’t bit around the bush, and bluntly said, that he wanted to make love. After a short reflection I went along with that. I wanted to know how it would feel, making love to him, after I loved him for so long, even though it was in the past.

Perhaps I knew, that it was going to be a disappointment. Yes, I knew. Strange though, because he still was a handsome boy I used to love. And here I had in bed with me the supple body, the blue eyes, the delicate hands… Something was dead. That part of the boy, which used to illuminate him was dying out for a long time now. There was just a tiny bit of the real him left, which was crying out, trying to survive, to put the bits back together, but the voice was hardly audible.

We mechanically made love for a long enough time to call it a session, our souls searching in vain for the crumbs of our past selves. We parted that day, without saying much. He came again later for the last time, was being persistent and even aggressive, but it was over for me.

Five years later the girl who was his first school sweet-heart phoned me to say, that he died of an overdose of heroin. She spoke through her nose. It was appropriate in given circumstances and she was always good at doing the appropriate thing. I had nothing to say. Nothing moved in me.

Some weeks later I met one of his close friends on the street. He was drunk and cheerful. “Maratka, huh… Clogged it, didn’t he?” – said he grinning.

He surely did.

Marina Kim

Two-sided Tale

May 5, 2011

Three butterflies were resting on the flower. After a long play in the air and a drink of nectar they felt like sitting quietly for a moment, enjoying a sunshine.

– Look at those thick prickly funny wriggly worms down there, – said one beautiful butterfly to another.
– Oh, yeah. Look at them crawling, chewing on the leaves.
– They are so ugly. Ugh…
– But!.. That’s what we were! – the third butterfly exclaimed.
– What?!
– Who? Us?..
– Were those?..
– Are you mad? He is mad.
– Oh, just ignore him.
– Waah-ha-ha-ha! Look at that one, the fattest one, it fell off it’s leaf! Must have eaten too much! Aha-ha-ha! Gready guts!The two butterflies laughed. In their butterflyey elegant manner they took off the flower and flattered away, chatting:
– Imagine! Us and those!
– Absolutely. He is out of his mind!
– He is weird, so unlike us.

The third one stayed behind. Still in disbelief he said, not addressing anyone in particular: “They don’t remember!”

A caterpillar sat on a leaf. Normally a caterpillar would be eating. This one, however, stopped for a moment. Something very beautiful distracted it’s attention from the caterpillary duties. Somewhere up high, on the prettier end of the plant he was sitting on, the caterpillar sow three unknown creatures. They were utterly handsome – slim bodies with long curling antennas crowning their heads, but most importantly – the wings. Those were simply magnificent!

“What are they?” – he thought in admiration.
– What are they? – he shouted to another caterpillar two leaves away.
– Dunno… – munch, munch…
– Excuse me, – he asked another one, down below, – do you know what are those creatures up there?
– Which ones?
– The ones with the pretty colourful things on their backs?
– Where?
– Up on the end of the plant.
– Where? I can’t see…
– Up there, – he shouted down, trying to point up with one of his little legs and… fell off the leaf.
– Ow! Ugh!

He sighed.”I am so… ugly and clumsy,” – thought he in despair, looking himself over. A little tear rolled down his fat fluffy cheek.

“Oh, well,” – he muttered and chewed on a leaf.

Marina Kim

The power of Words

October 9, 2009

The bakery opposite has a little note stuck to the window:

“SOUP AND A ROLL TO TAKE AWAY £1.60”

Imagine cold rainy morning of a little English town. You walk along the High Street, on your way to somewhere dull, feeling unloved, petty change weighing the poket of your coat. You see the note. You see the promise of warmth and care for just a little of your money. You can afford this much of love. You go in and buy the steaming cup and a crusty roll.

A tough Realist caught in one of your weaker moments, you get this: The soup is a thin delusion for 35 pence for a pack of 4, the roll is an ordinary fluffy tastless sponge. Never again! – you swear to yourself and stuff the lot into the bin. Your mood plunged down to the abyss of gloominess, you walk on under the wet, grey sky of the moderate climate.

A sentimental Romantic with interest in spirituality, you get this: The Love and Energy of the World manifested in the form of soup and roll, came to you with the message, that you are not alone. “Aahh” – you sigh, dunking the roll into the steaming fragrant liquid. The world is a friendly place and you are taken care of. Sky-blue mist lies on your eyes, conveniently photoshopping the surroundings, and murmuring “What a wonderful world” you skip on to spread the happiness (or annoy the Realists).

Just a few carefully chosen words and a point of view…