by Alexsandra Stewart


I’ve been thinking about passion, meditating on the word and feeling, checking the dictionary, because I so often hear myself say, “oh, I love that!”  And THAT might be a pair of shoes, a book, a painting, a house or a dinner with friends. I love You Tube, I love the internet, I love blogging; over and  over the waterfall words, I love, fall from my lips.

I love my grandchildren:

sweet, hockey playing Kinsey, who at eight has developed a bit of sass. Brave and long haired Ryan who moved to Brooklyn, and quiet, tune playing Joshua with his guitar.   My feelings for them are deep; I have passion for their well being, for their talents and their futures. I’d protect them with my life and know it. And I take the love for them to an abstract:  to some extent, I love all children.

I get teary; I get angry at injustice, cruel treatment, lack of healthcare. I write letters for them.  But have I made it my life? – a passion for children?

I have passion for beauty, for color, for tints and tones, and for shade against shade.  I’ll hit the brakes. go around the block for a second look, take a photograph.

Sometimes it’s just a wall or bench that captures my attention.

Sometimes it’s the light on a field, a falling down fence, a pattern on a wall.

I might be watching television, and have to catch my breath. The stage light on the gold, apricot, fire and persimmon set for Donald McKayle’s  “Rainbow ‘Round My Shoulder” is lush, rich, indescribable, and then it turns cool, dark, blue, black while the dancers bodies remain glistening beige, cocoa, amber. Scenes like that do me in.

But then so does some music. I love Pink Martini’s “U Plavu Zoru“, the old Frankie Carle version of “Deep Purple”, almost any version of Hoagy Carmichael’s “Stardust” and the entire play list of Beatles songs. Right now Coldplay’s Viva La Vida is getting my finger on replay as is Green Light. Sure, I love music but it’s not a passion – or I’d be making it somehow.

As I sort passion, words start singing. I love language. The act of writing, of feeling a thought, and an idea take shape, find a body. I love creating, when I am able, an image that has an odor, not just like blue cheese but like Roquefort, finding an expression that lays a gentle hand on a sad heart. To make phrases that snap, then shatter silence.

I loved the passion definitions I found in the dictionary, the thesaurus.

Passion: love, ardor, fervor, enthusiasm, attraction, infatuation, delight, craze, zeal, a state of intense affection, devotion, care and concern, tenderness and deep feeling, and yes, passion for someone or something. And rage, fury, outburst, fever, anger, furor, strong feelings. Don’t you love it, the word and the meanings?

I’ve discovered a few things about passion during these weeks of thought. I have it. I have it in its  varied, storied structures. I’m aware where the depth of passion lies.  It’s in my writing, my art and photography.

I’ve given up the extreme passion for politics I once had. I’m keeping my passion for love and all that attracts me.

And I’m keeping my passion for doing well, a passion with which I reacquainted myself. And while that doing well intensity has a tendency to get a bit driven, it is the chunk of me that sticks, the core of me that won’t fail, let go, or give up on a person, an idea, a search.

My passion is.

With gratitude to the following for taking up residence in my head while I meditated:

Up Above My Head I Hear Music in the Air – Sister Rosetta Tharpe

Rocks and Gravel –   Leon Bibb

I Hear America Singing – Walt Whitman

A broker with RE/Max Equity Group, Alexsandra Stewart  describes herself as “an artist, traveler, dreamer, real estate broker, reader, and gardener in no priority order.” She returned to her hometown of Portland in 2004 after a career as a diversity and organizational-development consultant, helping businesses and nonprofit organizations weather the process of change. Learn more about Stewart at  her site on the real estate blog Activerain.com.

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  • Women's Voices For Change February 26, 2009 at 9:07 am

    Alexsandra,
    What a lovely meditation, and so much fun to read. Made me smile.
    Also- the photo of the purple tables and chairs is a stunner!
    – Elizabeth W.

    Reply
  • Women's Voices For Change February 26, 2009 at 9:07 am

    Alexsandra,
    What a lovely meditation, and so much fun to read. Made me smile.
    Also- the photo of the purple tables and chairs is a stunner!
    – Elizabeth W.

    Reply
  • Women's Voices For Change February 26, 2009 at 9:07 am

    Alexsandra,
    What a lovely meditation, and so much fun to read. Made me smile.
    Also- the photo of the purple tables and chairs is a stunner!
    – Elizabeth W.

    Reply