Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Onalaska



I've traveled up to rural Washington to write for a week and wander around with the Bird Photographer. I was invited to this bucolic setting by a new friend, the artist and writer Mimi Feldman, who asked me over wine one night, What's up with your book? I probably sighed and rolled my eyes and made some sort of excuse or another, and she said, Why don't you come up to our house while my husband and I go on a road trip?

So I did.



Mimi and her husband Craig have created this incredible home in the middle of rural Washington. They have three goats, a cat, a barn with a studio that Craig built with his own hands, and views of rolling green and heather-flecked hills and regal pine trees. The home is filled with collections from their travels arranged artfully on beautiful, warm furniture. Their art hangs on the walls. Craig is an extraordinary abstract painter and carpenter. Mimi is an extraordinary painter as well, but I met her through writing and our shared experience of mothering and extreme parenting. She has written a magnificent book about her experience raising a son with schizophrenia. Until it's published, you can read her writing and see some of her art at her blog, The Asylum of the Universe. It will take your breath away. She's a badass.




Last night we talked about books and Bob Dylan and caregiving and men and women and children and life, the whole full catastrophe. This morning, Mimi and Craig drove off on their road trip adventure. Carl and I settled in and then wandered around a bit.




Now I've got to write.

18 comments:

  1. Fabulous! So happy you're getting to do this. 😘

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  2. Lovely to have such generous and creative friends and such wonderful spaces in which to write, Elizabeth. Now get on with that book. I'll bet it's begging to be finished.

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  3. I hope you have a lovely, productive week.

    I went to Mimi's blog. Schizophrenia is such a destructive disease. She's a wonderful writer.

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  4. Relax, enjoy and write.

    Best,
    Bonnie

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  5. It is lovely, hope your time there is everything you need it to be. Miriam's blog is riveting and heartbreaking. You are lucky to have such friends. xo

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  6. Elizabeth I love thinking of you so near. I started reading Miriam's website this morning and read through to the end. Incredible and heartbreaking and brilliant captivating writing. I can't wait for more. Thank you
    Love
    Rebecca

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  7. I'm so happy for you and Carl! What a gift. Thank you for sending that link, I was riveted and couldn't stop reading. Isn't Washington beautiful?!XXOO

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  8. I would say something like, "The Universe Is Abundant!" but you know me and I don't say things like that but I will say that I see so much love there in those pictures and in your words. Love and love and love and love.
    Peace and love, baby. And get to writing!

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  9. what a gift, indeed. Artists, fellow travelers, helping one another out. Just grand. Enjoy every minute.

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  10. I love this. So glad you have a writing retreat, so glad for the generosity of other writers.

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  11. Just last week I was thinking about you and your book. Have fun and enjoy your break!

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  12. This sounds like heaven! Enjoy!

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  13. This is perfect in so many imperfectly beautiful ways. I look forward to Mimi’s book. And yours!

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  14. Oh that sounds idyllic and restful, a perfect location for writing and bird photography... restoration of one's Soul! I will look forward to Mimi's Book, having raised a Schizophrenic Daughter it is therapeutic to see how other Parents have handled it. I'm so Happy you are getting this respite and to connect with your Passion for Writing in such a gorgeous setting!

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    1. PS: Elizabeth Thanks for the link to Mimi's Blog. OMG I have cried thru several Posts already... tears of commiseration, of the understanding of what it is like to have the SMI Child... and the Mother's Heart, which doesn't distinguish between the Healthy Child and the Unhealthy ones... Love under great pressure.

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  15. My god, mimi's work is stunning, both her writing and her art. Thank you for sharing her with us. You are part of such a thriving commune of artists, including the bird photographer, whose love for his medium and the world is evident in every photo, and your podcast partner, who makes of his very circumstance piercing art. And you do also. Perhaps it doesn't always feel as if you are in the swirl of this fierce and exquisite creative community of souls but from afar, it's crystal clear.

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  16. Angella said it far more eloquently than I can. Much love.
    Xoxo
    Barbara

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