An Empty Space

How to fill an 8"x10" space in an 11"x14" area: I challenged myself to draw this image in two hours. I failed. It took me three hours. I was furiously squiggling by the third hour and was so tired that I had to continue drawing while lying on low Fowlers position on the couch. My daughter ran her fingers through my hair to soothe me and rubbed my shoulders and back while I filled the background with squiggles. The squiggles on the edges are rough but I had to stop because I had to cook dinner. That was fun. Honestly, the drawing is not finished. I still have to draw miniature pictures on the white floating boards. The following is a tribute to my beloved sister Leah. 

An Empty Space

Everyday, I go on a journey 
To an empty space filled with pain and longing
upon which I stumble in the daytime
and fall into at night with nothing to anchor me.
The sorrow slowly devours me
until the tears swell 
and the tightness of my heart becomes real.
My heart aches and I scream in quiet anguish
until a million floating flecks of lights come to rescue me.
Each flicker holds a memory of you -
smiling, laughing, gentle words, intense gaze
a flash of energy and steely courage.
Slowly I am buoyed until I land safely
back where I started,
yet different because you are no longer here.
I hope my memory does not fail me
But if so, I will blindly follow my my heart
with every beat that proclaims 
I love you.
I love you so much and I miss you.
I feel lost without you.
I know, I know, I must go on.
But once in a while let me make this journey
if only to remind me that my life is full
and the space is not empty after all
because you dwell in it.

I am told of one April night,
you loved watching the fireflies hover around the bamboo grove at night.


Steve E said...

AWESOME! ALL of it. Such sweetness in poetic memorial to your sister. It touched my heart. Great capacity your have for loving, and I believe it is returned to you many-fold.

Ces, the 3-hour squiggle says so much. It 'speaks' of your obsession, exhaustion and determination to continue (pen-in-hand) with more 'empty spaces' to squiggle in.

Ah! Loving those Fireflies hovering around a bamboo grove. You color a complete April evening in one short sentence.

Thank you, Ma'am!

C.P.Adorio said...

Thank you Steve. It was not as dramatic as it sounds. I told my daughter I will get it done by 7PM so she can cheer me by giving me a back rub and hand-comb my hair. So I sort of "cheated" by going an extra 15 minutes. Heheheh!

dosankodebbie said...

I am always awed by your meticulous and careful work. The composition of this one really appeals to me. I think it is one of my favorites among your always fabulous work. And I especially admire you for successfully tearing yourself away from your art so that you could cook dinner for your family. :)

C.P.Adorio said...

Aaaawww. Debbie, thank you. Your comment means a lot because I am in awe of your etegami. Thank you very much. Oh yes, my family is very patient and accommodating and my husband does not demand but we were all hungry and I love cooking for my family especially that they keep me company in the kitchen and help me or just talk to me and tell me stories when I cook.

Steve E said...

Ces, you're RIGHT! OMG! I googled what you told me, and OH, I'm almost embarrassed--even though NOTHING is there which is suggestive, etc. I went to each of the links of my long-ago posts. In one of them Oct 25, 2010 (steveroni) there IS a pictire of a child--it looks like one of Bella's creations, but unsigned...so I don't know.

You give me a reason to stay up all night--although I do not need 'reasons'--grin!
I feel better with you helping me through this crap--and dammmit, just today I read about the bishop in Philadelphia, who...well, never mind. I'm ready to quit the church again. I was more serene and happy with God, when left to my own relationship with him. Then felt drawn back--for the People there, who I missed. Also get to play violin every week, keep in shape.

WHAT IS THIS? Steve's blog? Hello? Goodbye! You have been nice to me, thank you a lot! We must talk one day soon.

martinealison said...

Ce dessin qui te donne tant fatigue est déjà très joli même si celui-ci n'est pas achevé pour toi ma chère Ces.
On dirait le "Petit Prince" de Saint-Exupéry.
Les mots sont très beaux que tu écris et qui soulage la plaie qui est dans ton coeur.
Je te fais de gros bisous.

Rick Forrestal said...

You know, some of your great efforts, your detailed drawings, are the result of your feelings and intense emotions, especially for your departed sister Leah. These intense memorials and efforts remind me of one artist, Gustav Klimt, whose work I recently viewed in Vienna. I've read about this intense man, who restlessly drew and painted throughout the night -- and his work and detail is so beautiful. Just last week, I came across one of Klimt's quotes which I pass on to you now . . .

"True relaxation, which would do me a world of good, does not exist for me." (Gustav Klimt)

Can we relate to his passion?

Rod MacGregor said...

Awesome Ces! As usual you have filled a blank space to its fullest!

C.P.Adorio said...

Merci Martine Alison. Ah oui, il est parfois nécessaire d'exercice. Les émotions et les sentiments sont appréciés et je longue pour eux, mais à la fin des dessins envie de bande dessinée comme des caricatures. Ils rabaissent mes émotions. Je déteste ces dessins. Mais je ne peux pas arrêter. Il est de mon cocaïne. Je les hais.

C.P.Adorio said...

Thank you Rick. One can only aspire to be Klimt both in passion and talent. I have neither nor have the dedication and seriousness. I do not deny my feelings but in the end these illustrations belittle my feelings and tribute for the appear elementary. Yet I struggle at leaving and stopping. It is an addiction and a curse. It gives me more anguish in the end because I turned my emotion into a caricature. I only hope I am forgiven.

C.P.Adorio said...

Ah thank you Rod. There is a term for something that one does automatically and without thought. A tic! :) Hehehe.

k.h.whitaker said...

Oh Ces, I love the way she is sprawled out on the ground and all those glorious squiggles :) What a lovely tribute. I can't wait to see it with the tiny drawings. I would fail at a two or three hour deadline. Especially with this much detail, good grief. You must have super sonic hands. No wonder you got tired.

C.P.Adorio said...

Thank you, Karen. Eh, that was just a game. Maybe I will invent a sqiggling machine. I am standing in front of a rental car place in the middle of nowhere and it is very quiet here!!!

Deborah said...

Awe, beeeeeeutiful! All of it. Getting drawn into this one gave me vertigo! No like falling head first! I KNEW you drew this in an obsession. INTENSE. FIERCE! Like Little Mama Who Bear. I can just picture your sweet daughter rubbing your shoulders as you become more and more intense. Sweet image. You are one passionate woman, my Cesalicious.

I am sorry you are missing your sister so. I do not know how I will deal with my loss when it comes. Right now I put it out of my mind, though I know the time will come. I am trying to build more life with him and the world around me before that time...so there will still be life to carry me. Faith in life everlasting. All my love to you, Deb

C.P.Adorio said...

Janice Lucier has left a new comment on your post "An Empty Space":

Your work is fantastic!

Ted Blackman said...

Looks like a very comfortable, soft space for lying down in. The pose and paraphernalia is chaotic but the lawn looks just right. Except for those dandelions, better pull those before they go to seed.

C.P.Adorio said...

Thank you dearest Deb. I am exhausted today. Tsup!

Shirley said...

The love you hold for your family is ginormous, Ces. I am so so very touched by it. The poem resonates so fully with me and my love for my family (mom) who is now gone but only physically. I thank you for sharing this with us. What an exceptional illustration..and goodness, those loafers are AWESOME! Thank you so much for your sweet visit and for noticing my little boys' daddy's golf shoes. I had fun painting those. Wishing you and your dear family are well. I just have to say that it is good for the soul to take these journeys, Ces. I really do. I think we are supposed to do it now and again..for feeling so intensely is one of the gifts we are given in life. Thank you my friend, tsup!!

Bella Sinclair said...

Floating...drifting...trying to fill the time until you meet again.

The only good thing about floating is that people generally look better without gravity.


C.P.Adorio said...


C.P.Adorio said...

Thank you Shirley. Those are my favorite Brighton loafers. I don't know a lot of things but I am just sad that my sister is gone. I don't think I will ever get over that. Thank you.

C.P.Adorio said...

Yes, there are no bags and sags. You know, I just love you so much. That's all.