This morning, after basting the improv quilt, I sat to edit some of The Hawk. I’m two thirds through the second part, reading about three chapters a day, and at the end of Chapter 33, I had to smile. Sometimes being a writer is very rewarding.
But it’s not only about the words; basting that little quilt, which will be for my grandkids when they visit, has also stirred relevatory notions; I spent much of last night sewing the last section, then found myself wondering about the backing. I considered flannel, but it’s been so warm lately, and…. And I wanted to put a little of Sherri Lynn Wood into this quilt, even if I’ve used a ruler. So I made do with what I had, which is some special hippo fabric. I’ll tell that tale later, for what I most wanted to say today is how blessed is the ability to create, be it with prose or cotton or in any other manner of expression. As soon as I finished Chapter 33, I had to check laundry, but today’s title bubbled in my brain, for being an artist is truly God’s gift. And I am *ever so thankful* to have been graced with crazy plots and improvisational quilts and healing poems and baby yarn and hippos and….
Hippos are indeed for another day. In the meantime, here’s how Chapter 33 ends. Part Two of the The Hawk will be released sometime next month, but here’s a little taste of how the tale has evolved. If you’re interested in Part One, you can find it here.
Renee wailed louder, but Sam wasn’t worried. Something was being released in her cries, and it wasn’t all from her. He wrapped her close, to shield her, for he knew how badly she ached, yet, she needed to expel this, even if it was in front of Eric and Lynne. What did it matter now, for Sam had tended to Eric when that man wasn’t even a man, and next spring Renee would minister to Lynne in her most compromised moment. But the situations, while somewhat tenuous, weren’t bad; they were about new life springing forth, wounds being healed. Occasionally pain was involved, but ultimately those aching memories were set aside by the joy of what had been transformed. Eric had suffered immensely, Lynne would too. Sam could sense Renee’s agony, similar to how he’d felt on the battlefield, and as with every dying man he had held in his arms. Was all their pain akin to Mary, cradling her dead son, Sam wondered. Maybe, for while Mary was mother to a savior, Jesus had also been her human offspring. Perhaps she’d had no idea of his divinity, or maybe Sam had it all wrong.
But in that moment, he grasped the barest edges of why Christ had come at all, to ease the torment, to give new life. In that room, a new creation was forming. As Renee started to calm, Sam stepped toward Eric and Lynne. Sam stroked Lynne’s cheek, then he gestured for Eric to take Renee. Then Sam embraced Lynne, whispering something only for them. She nodded, then began crying profusely. Sam hadn’t wanted to stir her tears, but maybe the soul could respond in no other fashion. As he comforted Lynne, Sam stared at her image on the canvas. Then he gazed at Eric, who nodded his head.