Saturday, February 10, 2007

Carol Dancing Outdoors

Here is a special picture I took back in 1980 of my friend,Carol. She was a beautiful dancer and one day we took a trip to a farm where the woman sold vintage clothes and she let Carol and my daughter,Valerie, try on dresses and pose for a variety of pictures. This one of them and seems fitting to put into this Blog in honor of Aletta and the world of dance.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

The Last Dance

to put away again
Some years ago I had to decide to stop dancing, rather than allow my health to downgrade my dancing I would stop before humiliating myself in front of an audience. I've not worn pointe shoes since that day, not even in private.


I took the last pair of pointe shoes, took them for one last spin and cast one of them into the garbage bin and left the studio. It was gutwrenching. The other of the two slippers I have kept, tucked away in my clothes closet.


Today I took my old friend out of the closet and we sat a while, thinking of old times, the times when I could fly. The ribbon was loosened and the shoe placed on the foot. It still fits, but without a mate I cannot take it for a ride. So with a sigh, the ribbon is tucked around the heel again and the shoe after one more portrait, was put out of sight again.

portrat of an old friend

Monday, June 26, 2006

Would you believe 10!!

images by aletta mes 2006

Meeting Death - Can't Ether

images by aletta mes 2006

So that...drumrole please ................... trrrtrrtrrtrr .... yep, that makes a grand total of ten sparrowgirl stories. I have promised myself to do twenty before moving on to the next four years of my childhood, and I am half way there!!

Monday, May 01, 2006

Gaia Welcomes Leonie Home

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Her daughter returns home.
with love
Heather Blakey

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Bringing Leonie Bryant Home

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le Enchanteur and Leonie Bryant's spirit bird taking Leonie home to sleep in the Bower of Bliss

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

A Walk in the Polder

orginal artwork by aletta mes
Some families spent their Sunday's going to church, we didn't, we took a long walk. If the weather was particularly good we would bicycle. Well, more specifically my parents would bicycle, to some new place to explore at leisure. This was a particularly bright and sunny day in the middle of summer. A real scorcher by Dutch standards. I rode with my father in a child's bicycle seat, one that would have been met with gasps of disapproval by today's standards. It was black metal and red vinyl and collapsed when not in use. Moms bicycle had a large wicker basket in which the family dog rode. Not one person we knew well owned a car, there was always those days a very small number of motor vehicles comprised mostly of the cheapest of Citroens and Volkswagen bugs.

I could smell that we were coming closer to the sea, it was in the air. Sea gulls screeching with delights as their extended wings caught every warm air current, endlessly gliding along. Everything here was either sand coloured or sea green. Only tall patches of grass broke the very flat landscape, all of it an extended quilt of sandy lifeless polders and squares of grass, just occasionally a patch of houses. One such patch of houses was Spijkernisse. There were no new buildings like the ones in Hoogvliet where we lived. Here the air no longer reeked of the refineries. The quiet here was quite shocking to the system. Our normally chatty family was just now silent, we were blending in, at one with the calm.

We came to the very edge of a brand new polder, not a building, a road, or even a blade of grass, nothing. There was only packed sand dotted by small stones and decaying jellyfish. Seagulls were diving for any small thing that moved. As I was being lifted out of my kiddy seat...

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Tuesday, February 14, 2006

The Unseen and the Weeping Lady

Under certain circumstances, fairies will just see a need to intervene. such was the case with Ms. Millar one warm springtime many years ago. It had not been long before that splendid day that Ms. Millar, they valley's school teacher had to bury her young husband. He had died in a faraway war, in another country far, far away. Ms. Millar was still living in a big city then, she'd just finished going to teacher's college. she was lonely and spent all her evenings in the darkness crying until she finally would fall asleep.

It was her cousin Elizabeth who invited her to come and stay with her in the valley, As it happens, and quite often it does, just then the teacher Mr. Rolf, decided he really needed to stop teaching after thirty years and open a candy shop instead. Perhaps it came about because after years of taking away candy from his pupils he decided he's just much rather make the most wonderful candy for children to enjoy. So he did, within weeks he's rented a store and was making the most wonderful candy.

The position did not come with a fabulous salary, just a small salary and a small cottage to live in just a hundred feet away from the little school house. It meant teaching all the grades and giving all the exams to all the valley's children (numbering no more than 20 per term). Mr. Rolf , the retired teacher, now the local candy store proprietor, even offered to substitute those times that Ms. Millar (only her close friends call her Kate) should fall ill.

The valley over a period of weeks was fast becoming the only place in the world where Ms. Millar could imagine living. so she packed all her things in the city and moved to the valley. She has now been here more than thirty years.

Back to that afternoon, that warm peaceful afternoon, when the fairies were swinging from poppy to poppy. The dog and cat were occupied chasing butterflies. the smell of weak bleach and laundry soap permeated the air. The fresh coat of white paint made her little cottage home sparkle in the afternoon light. The warm wind caused the leaves to make a gentle rustling sound. You could hear birds chirping and the occasional snap of a towel as Mrs. Millar hung the laundry on her clothesline. All the changes in her life had Mrs. Millar losing some weight and it was partly that and partly her damp hands which had the ring slip off her finger. Not just any ring either, but the very ring with which years ago she had become Mrs. Millar. The ring that Mr. Millar had slipped on her finger on that bright summer's day at their wedding.

Falling on the grass as it did it made no sound. Mrs. Millar was completely unaware. The dog took no note of it either. Two beady little eyes had noticed. The small rodent always noticed when sparkly things fell on the ground nearby. After all a tiny rodent like this mouse could not see much above the ground. This was his world, the ground and all that there was. The mouse scurried very quickly to the ring and ran off with it. He did not know precisely why he did it. He had no use for the ring, it could not be eaten, and mice don't wear jewellery, nor had they any interest in how much it might be worth if sold. It just sparkled so intensely and he had to have it. That, and nothing more, was all there was to it. It was heavy to carry and he did not take it far away, just to behind a large oak tree in Mrs. Millar's own yard. He sat feeling quite triumphant for the whole rest of the afternoon just staring at the ring, as it twinkled like a star in the bright sunlight. Well, he stayed, until he became hungry and was then off forgetting all about the ring.

It was an hour or so later when she was taking down the now dry laundry from the line when she finally noticed the missing ring. It was one of those suspicious absence of something. In this case the twinkling of the diamond in the sun as she held up her hand in the light was something to which she was well accustomed so when the twinkling was absent she noticed immediately. She shrieked. So loud was the shriek that several crows very nearly fell out of the tree above her. The shriek was followed by an absolute silence. The birds stopped chirping, the dog an cat suddenly sat in place, fairies and pixies stopped what they were doing, even the wind became silent.

There are all kinds of shrieks, but this one, was so incredibly sad, not just horrified but sad. There was no a soul who had heard it who was not profoundly saddened, just from hearing the shriek. The silence was broken by weeping and then sobbing and then for seemingly hours, a soft crying.

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