Tuesday, 3 September 2013


“Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live.” - Norman Cousins

Magpie Tales has given us a Jeanie Tomanek painting this week to inspire us and stimulate some creativity for all those who take part in her challenge. Here is my offering.

Betwixt Laughter and Tears

How easily the pure white wedding dress changes to a shroud,
Mad laughter from sobbing tears cannot be distinguished.
The drunken revelry of feast only a step away from blackest desperation
And always, loneliness my most faithful companion…

Look at my eyes that pretend to laugh,
My lips that ostensibly stretch widely in a smile;
My hands gesticulating wildly,
Running after the jests that my mind imposes upon them.

If you could look into my heart, you’d understand:
You’d see the tears that fill it to the brim
Torrents that threaten to break all dams of pretended gaiety,
To spill over, drag down and drown feigned smiles.

Jeanie has this to say about herself and her art:
“Throughout my adult life I have always painted – sometimes only one painting a year.  Several years ago I escaped corporate life.  Since then I have concentrated on developing my style and voice in my work.

I paint to explore the significance of ideas, memories, events, feelings, dreams and images that seem to demand my closer attention.  Some of the themes I investigate come first in poems I write.  Literature, folktales and myths often inspire my exploration of the feminine archetype.  My figures often bear the scars and imperfections that, to me, characterize the struggle to become.

In my work I use oils, acrylic, pencil and thin glazes to create a multi-layered surface that may be scratched through, written on or painted over to reveal and excavate the images that feel right for the work. In reclaiming and reconstructing areas of the canvas, the process of painting becomes analogous to having a second chance at your life, this time a little closer to the heart’s desire.”


  1. Whoa, that was certainly sobering.

  2. ... there is a fine line between happiness and despair. Life can turn on one in a split second, as I have recently found. Such a solemn piece ...

  3. so good and nicely written....thanks for this