Poetry behind the painting
About 11 months ago my friend Diana Zeng gifted this painting to me. A generous and thoughtful act to be sure.
Several years prior she had decided it was time to move away from the business world and become a practicing artist. We had spoken at times about the difficulty she faced trying to find her niche and practice style. I had recently entered a similar period of seeking as my 9-5 had ended. She told me the name of the piece was “In the moments before…”, I almost cried. She spoke of a feeling that something great was on the horizon for me and she wanted me to have it.
This piece hangs on a wall in my home but at times has become like anything that is no longer new. Days or weeks might pass without noticing or thinking about it. The other night I was wrapping up a conversation with my aunt and uncle about my emerging enterprises in both the cocktail sphere and consulting world. As we said our goodbyes I said to them regarding the unknown fate of my ventures, “here goes something!”. As we parted those words held on and found myself attempting to recall, "is that the name of the piece Diana gave me?”Within a moment or two I remembered it’s actual name but as I reflected on its title, what it represented changed.
At the time of receiving the piece it had represented a summit or finish line. As I have evolved and changed over the past year I now see it as a bend in the path. It occurred to me that we are always in the moments before. Life is a mystery. We don’t quite know where it is going nor how long it will keep going. But the moments that are to come at any moment offer up potential surprises. Whether or not we will enjoy what arrives is a whole other thing but the unknown future continues to be obscured as it lays just beyond the horizon.
Over the past couple days this title has become an invitation for me to embrace the unknown. What will become of my family, friend and collegial relationships? What of my work? What geographic and psychological adventures lie ahead? Is there romantic love on the horizon? If it finds me what will it teach me? What do I believe now that will change as I age? How will my priorities shift as new chapters happen upon me?
Thank you Diana for your beautiful work and the unexpected way it has touched me.