TO ENTRUST A CHILD WITH FIRE
Joan Rudd | Dec 11, 2017, 6 a.m.
To entrust a child with a match, with lighting fire, is no small thing. Her sense of her own power increases with every candle lit, until she believes she can create light. Creating light is the basis for creation, for a creative life, for love, for children.
Among some of my old art books, I found a folded length of gold foil paper. In my childhood such paper was used for making the flames above the paper Hanukkah menorah scotch taped to the dining room mirror.
As an adult, far from home, from parents, from firstborn child, I was still saving gold paper to make flames, to make light, in my new home and for my second child (son). Some years later, I was hospitalized with a broken hip over the start of Hanukkah, during his senior year of high school, and he brought paper flames to me, scotch taped to an actual silver-plated menorah with short pretend paper candles. I cried over the sweetness of this gesture: to kindle flames, to keep the fire, even in the darkest night of pain. [Excerpt from Joan’s upcoming book.]
Joan Rudd transplanted herself to the Pacific NW from New York to go to college some fifty years ago. She is a visual artist and a first generation American who started writing up her stories in 2003, and continues with the support of the group at the Greenwood Senior Center.
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