I visited Ireland in '97, for 5 weeks...was "on foot"...so only painted around two towns. The original of this creation was 6x16, and enlarged to this painting when I returned home. An awe inspiring event happened: a small bird came...checked out my painting (no, it wasn't looking for bugs?!). It would look at me, then turn and look directly at my painting. He did this 3 times! I offered it some sunflower seeds,
which it took while balancing on my thumb, then flew off! I just figured birds were friendly in Ireland
The next day en-route to a castle, the same sort of bird landed on the pavement. I stooped to photograph it, it flew 15 feet down the road... I gave up after many attempts to photograph it!
I had to count backwards from the day I left the States, to figure out the date, to write this down in my journal. The day the bird ate out my hand, was the first anniversary of my Father’s passing: May 19!! So, I titled that little “plein air” painting “I AM THE SUNLIGHT” after a Native American poem:
Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there, I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am the diamond glints in snow,
I am the sunlight on ripening grain,
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning hush,
I am the swift uprising rush of silent birds in flight.
And I am the bright stars that shine at night.
So do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there, I did not die