That's a pretty big word, full of sweat and temper and ... stuff.
Since then I've read other books, blogs and journals about the trials and travails of the artist's life. Nearly all of them encourage, warn, advise or admonish the reader to find, dig up or uncover passion. Live on it! Let it drive you! Run headlong into your life! Be intense!
I believe what the world needs more of is calm repose.
I did not do one extreme, emotional, fiery, thing. Read a couple of books. Pulled weeds, washed windows. Watched Handsome Husband fish. Watched two Fine Young Men get sunburned. Watched movies. Picked tomatoes. Visited family. Allowed three really nice people to buy some of my art. The strongest feeling I drummed up was when I got up in the morning..."Ooh, goodie, coffee!"
I eased through the day. I sat and thought. I practiced tranquility. Every now and then I'd move - not much, but enough that the squirrels didn't try to bury acorns between my toes.
I believe in calm repose. I believe it's necessary. I believe we should do it often and with great regularity, daily even.
If I spent time in a passionate dither, would I have time to look at the cottonwood tree across my alley and study the way the leaves changed color when the breeze ruffles through them? Does passion allow contemplating the color in the shadows as they creep across my yard? How do I sit very still in the early morning and catch the sun's first rays on the very tip-top leaves of my maple tree if I'm all wiggly with aspiring fervor?
Allow time to let the sun cross over your feet while you sit in the garden. Allow your heart to beat slowly. Allow your muse to come to you slowly, surely and confidently.