This is the poem that inspired the name of this blog. It reminds me of the feeling I get when I’m walking in a familiar area and look down a street I’ve often passed by before. Something catches my eye: a colourful mat hanging over a balcony ledge, a bush of hydrangeas or a line of trees at the end of the road. What’s behind them? I wonder. What else would I see if I walked down that street? For me, that is how inspiration feels. I like the idea of creating a world out of one black tree, and then letting it go.
Whoever you may be: step into the evening.
Step out of the room where everything is known.
Whoever you are,
your house is the last before the far-off.
With your eyes, which are almost too tired
to free themselves from the familiar,
you slowly take one black tree
and set it against the sky: slender, alone.
And you have made a world.
It is big
and like a word, still ripening in silence.
And though your mind would fabricate its meaning,
your eyes tenderly let go of what they see.
‘Keep your mind clear. To create something fresh and direct, you must work from nothingness.’ Sumi-e painting by Koho Yamamoto