“Letting our everyday intelligence go mute: to feel the intelligence of what surrounds us.
Take a tree, a flower, a blade of grass – and study their stillness. Become their stillness; aware only of the air your imagining begins in.
There is something in our learning – which begins and ends – without words
Often the poetic must remain our most quiet, unspoken experience – a healing silence frim the cacophony of explanations.
The point is not to teach – but to evoke, to stir our desire to believe differently.
Invent as many dawns as you can.”
I met Richard Lewis this summer in New York City. Richard is an educator and director of The Touchstone Center for Children. He has dedicated his 40 year career to exploring and nurturing children’s capacity for imagination and creativity. After talking with him, not unlike the character of Mr. Plumbean in Daniel Pinkwater’s book The Big Orange Splot I was moved to explore creativity and imagination with children. Using one of Richard’s poems, which he has used to launch all kinds of art, drama, poetry and musical projects with children, we initiated a project with Salmonberry’s intermediate class.
The work shown here is the stunning expression of 14 children age 8-11. After some time spent in the presence of a special tree, these students used their incredible imagination to express “tree-ness.” Then they each chose a line of the poem, “A Tree Lives” by Richard Lewis that had personal meaning to them and created the following images using a range of art media. Enjoy!
IN ITS LEAVES – DISTANT SKIES