Sunday, 31 May 2015

Guest Post: The Shadow of Your Love | Pat Elliott

Hello my wonderful fellow book nerds, I have a wonderful guest post for you today. As many of you may know I love creativity is its many forms and love to paint, knit, and create as well as write. I have been very fortunate to have met a wonderful lady who has gifted me with many a kind word but also tons of encouragement and support which she will never know how immensely grateful I am. But enough about me, let me hand you over to the lovely lady herself, Pat Elliott.

Guest Post:

Hello Daniel, 

Thank you for inviting me to your blog. 

For your readers who've not met me before, my name is Pat Elliott– I'm a reflexologist, a painter and a writer.
I became interested in reflexology after my husband had a back injury and conventional medicine wasn't helping him recover. When I started my own full time business as a reflexologist, nearly 20 years ago, I needed something to fill the hours when I wasn't working, until I'd built my business up. That's when I started classes in watercolour painting. Once I felt comfortable with watercolours, I took a couple of courses in creative writing. The first was on writing short stories.
Now when I paint, the paintings inspire my writing.
I'll give you a 'for instance'

Here is a painting called 'The Shadow of Your Love'

and here is the story it inspired:

The Shadow of Your Love

The painting arrived today. The beautiful white rose, with the hint of blue, whenever the light captures it in a certain way. The artist has done a great job, she has captured the nuances of light, the nuances of our love. I've hung it in the lounge, dearest, over the fireplace. When I look at it, I can see where you used to stand, leaning on the mantelpiece, telling me your dreams. I wish you could talk to me now.

Do you remember where we met? The art exhibition. Whoever decided to throw a party at the same time was the one responsible for our meeting. The free food and drink was the reason I went. It was a bonus to meet you. I came to learn that you had a dreamer's soul, that the food and drink were not an attraction for you. It was a painting that called to you. Standing in front of 'My Captain', you had such a faraway look in your eye. That's when I fell in love with you. I miss that look today.

I wonder what you would think of the rose? I think you'd like it. I think you would see the glories within. In the heart of the rose you would see the portal to another world. One where love and peace reign. A world you're now enjoying, whilst your presence is longed for here.

Do you remember the long walk by the side of the River Thames after we left the exhibition? We never felt the cold, we barely felt the rain, we were so happy and intoxicated with each other's presence. I miss your warmth now, my love.

You came back to my little house and you never left. You brought me roses every week, always roses and always white. You used to say to me that pretty ladies should always have pretty flowers. I wish you could bring me some now.

I never had to worry that you brought flowers because of some misdeed, some shortcoming. You brought them because you loved me. How I love you still.

Do you remember the dreams we shared? The way we planned to leave the city and the long discussions over countryside or seaside? I favoured the country and you, the sea. I thought the sea too cold, too bleak in the winter. The countryside was warmer. You said the sea was wild and romantic and suited us better. How we laughed. If you could hear laughter now, it would be hollow.

We were so proud when we sold my London house and bought a home by the sea. We furnished it with warm and bright colours so I'd never feel the cold. I never did whilst you were with me, darling. I feel it now.

How we danced at the New Year party, how the locals took us both to heart. Mainly because of you, my love, because of your love for the sea. They found you work on a fishing boat, oh how proud you were! I remembered the dreams in London, the day of the exhibition. I knew you would be the happiest man alive if you could be Captain of your own boat. You worked and worked, so did I and we'd dream of your boat and save for it. Yet still you brought me roses. We got there though, didn't we, love? We bought that boat after seven years and the pride we had, to see you, Captain.

How you loved to sail the sea, how you loved to fish. I loved seeing you so happy. How I wish I could see you now. Do you remember how I used to put a light in the window every time you went night fishing? How you used to laugh at me following that old tradition and tell me I was a real Captain's wife? There's a light burning now in the window, my love, but one you will see no more.

I remember the day you set out, so clearly, the way you came home early, saying you felt not quite right. You sat in my chair gazing out to the sea you adored, as much as you adored me - and gently slipped from this world. Seventy five years on this earth was too short, my love, especially when we only shared fifty of them.

I know you're sailing a different sea now, and when I look into the centre of that rose, I see the sky you're sailing under. When I see the many shadows on the white rose, I see the many ways you loved me. How could that artist know? How could she name it 'The Shadow of Your Love'? How could she paint it white by painting blue? For blue is how I feel without you. I stand in the shadow of your love, I see the opening to another world and peace comes upon me. We will be together again, my love.


For a little extra bonus on the painting front – here's the painting 'My Captain'


My website is here:

You will find links to my paintings and to my writing.
I've written two full length novels and am currently writing a third.
I've also written a little volume of short stories, so if you like the one above, there are more!

If you want to follow me on Twitter – my handle is @feetpaintwords

Thanks for hosting me, Daniel – it's been great fun!