Our 2022 Theme:  "A Certain Slant of Light"

There's a certain Slant of light,

Winter Afternoons –

That oppresses, like the Heft

Of Cathedral Tunes –

 

Heavenly Hurt, it gives us –

We can find no scar,

But internal difference –

Where the Meanings, are –

 

None may teach it – Any –

'Tis the seal Despair –

An imperial affliction

Sent us of the Air –

 

When it comes, the Landscape listens –

Shadows – hold their breath –

When it goes, 'tis like the Distance

On the look of Death –

                   ~ Emily Dickinson

So much depends on light.   Plants require it for photosynthesis.

Most living creatures need it at least a little to maintain a healthy body.

The sun’s light generates all earth’s energy.

     

Light reveals, nourishes, energizes, and renews.

Morning on Alazan Bayou Catriona OReilly.jpg

Photo:

"Morning on Alazan Bayou"

     (Nacogdoches, Texas)  

 

    - Caitriona O'Reilly

For the 2022 Art Festival, we are  asking artists and poets to “shed light” on the earth.

 

You might follow Emily Dickinson’s lead as she suggests that “a certain slant of light…” impacts how we see things:

                 

              When it comes, the Landscape listens –

              Shadows – hold their breath –

              When it goes, ‘tis like the Distance

              On the look of Death –

 

You might simply want to praise the light as T.S. Eliot does in his poem, The Rock:

 

              “… O Greater Light, we praise Thee for the less;

             The eastern light our spires touch at morning,

             The light that slants upon our western doors at evening,

             The twilight over stagnant pools at batflight,

             Moon light and star light, owl and moth light, …”

 

Eliot reveals a subtlety to light that we may be in danger of losing. The places where we can view the Milky Way with the naked eye are fewer and fewer as we light up our cities and highways. Have human beings misused light to negatively impact the environment?

 

13th century Persian poet, Rumi, focuses on the intimacy between Sun and Earth when he writes:

 

      “And still, after all this time, the Sun has never said to the Earth, ‘You owe me.’

      Look what happens with love like that. It lights up the sky.”

 

Is there something in the generosity of light that inspires love?

Perhaps there are other metaphors (eg. truth or wisdom) that speak to our relationship to the earth?

 

Shed light on what we are doing to the earth. Celebrate light and its life-sustaining capacity. 

Show us how to love the light. We look forward to seeing/hearing your “slant of light” !