Isolation Chronicles – Stasis

Isolation Chronicles - Stasis - Karen Olson Photography

It has been a little over two weeks since ‘Pandemic Panic’ began to set in here in Maine. Just last night an order came down from the powers that be to close all non-essential businesses that cannot practice social distancing. Social distancing…a term we were previously unfamiliar with but are all too familiar with now.

We are in stasis now. The flurry of activity to collect whenever it is we thought we might need for the duration has come to a halt. And now we wait. It’s looking like it’s going to be a long haul.

What does one do while in stasis? What do I do in stasis? Apart from employing my mothers depressions era food conservation techniques and planning a pandemic garden, what do I do with my days? Grateful for my state of retirement and current good health, I quickly realize the advantage of this type of stasis is a whole lot of white space to create. Strangley enough, I am beginning to feel a sense of glee. I know I should probably feel the weight of the planet on my shoulders, but having zero ability to change a thing, I decide the best thing I can do is continue to make art.

The sense of glee comes from time to walk in the woods, noticing every detail of the bark of a tree, spending an hour just watching the light reflect on a gently flowing  steam. Spending two hours a day slowing reading deep estoteric literature that I would normally not have the head space for has given me a sense of calm. And best of all, I am in full on creative flow. Every day I am able to disconnect from everything going on around me and create. Limitations of space, connection, and context has opened up a challenge that I am happy to accept. I am fully aware that limitation whether necessary of self imposed can be a catalyst for creative innovation and it certainly has. Hence the glee, the sense of joy and delight, against a strange a completely chaotic backdrop.



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