Edgartown… the glory and the guts

Took me all day but here are three from the town of Edgar…

Lite Wash

Lite Wash  –  16 x 20

A view from choir loft in the Old Whaling Church in Edgartown.
On window washing day.

It’s been on the books, so to speak,
the sketchbooks that is,
for a few years.

Some are like that.
You sketch out a composition,
think it’s all set and it goes on the list
of paintings for a given year’s worth of shows.

Then time, or energy, or a divergent theme,
bump that idea down the ladder.

It happens that way.
Then something,
or someone,
comes along and there’s a spark.

So, I was sitting at the big table in the gallery
talking to Chris and Adam one day
and they mentioned something about the Old Whaling Church.
I said, you know, I had this idea for a painting…
but I’m not sure…

They both said, “we’d love to see that”. That was all I needed.
I have done a few from the outside and a couple from within,
but this painting allows for both perspectives,
and then some.

I had worked on it for several days before Herself actually took her first look.
She did what you probably did,
kinda tilted her head…then the other way…
then back. I waited. Then she got it.
“Oh, I remember that day. I was worried about your knees after we climbed up there.”

See, that’s what I’m talking about.
It takes a village.

The Yachtsman

The Yachtsman  –  12 x 19

In all it’s newly shingled glory,
The Edgartown Yacht Club.
I love the simple E.Y.C. over the office door.

As someone who is not a member,
and has only appreciated the landmark
for it’s exterior,
I wanted to edit it down to the iconic elements.

New England cedar,
shiny copper weathervane,
flag snapping to attention,
masts at the ready,
the yachtsman scanning the horizon…
and the lantern softly glowing to guide his way home.

The Gutting

The Gutting  –  24 x 36

Ah there’s always a dark side.

In The Yachtsman, you have a sunny, blue skied, fair weather kind of a day.

Here, the clouds thicken.

The air was heavy and it was deep into the beyond of the shoulder season,
Out in the gun metal grey waters of the harbor,
only the heartiest of working vessels were moored.

The wind was kicking up,
and we had just come from the Newes,
with bellies full of chowder and a pint or two of October ale,
and I thought I could hear a steady tapping…
just there coming around the corner behind us…
like the wooden peg of a leg,
tap tap tapping on the weathered cobbled stone.

I reached over, pulled up the collar of Herself’s Pea Coat ,
and snuggled closer for the warmth,
and we made our way down to the dockside.
‘Twas then I heard the screaming.
Ghastly wales, a staccato of screeching,
and a frenzy of feathers seemed to come at us from all directions.
The water churned and the sky was a roiling mass of gulls.
Through the miasma of wings I could see a figure.
A lone fisherman was tearing out the guts of his supper.

It seemed as if all of the island flock was massing, and thrashing,
to win the foul spoils of his long cold day at sea.
The gruesome sight was more than I could bear,
and my chowder began to repeat.

Just before I managed to steer us away,
in the midst of the carnage and chaos,
I caught a glimmer of light.

Perched on top of the blood red piling,
with a gaping maw of frothing yellow beak,
a white throated gull threw back her head
and just
and stunningly…

The fisherman turned his head…
And I will swear that I saw…
a silvery, slithery, black eye patch.


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