BEYOND BLUE WILLOW (2013)
For centuries, the Blue Willow china pattern has been whispering a tale of forbidden love. The porcelain print is the story of a girl, in love with a worker on her father’s tea plantation, and those that pursue them when they run away together. She has been promised to a suitor who is already sailing to collect his bride. The two lovers are wistfully transformed into birds who escape to the skies together.
Fervent pursuit to that which calls the heart.
Many cultures carry a tale of this fight for love. From nation to nation, from people to people, we are not as different from one another as we might initially perceive.
In fact, another forbidden love spreads across the landscape of the world. There is a far deeper narrative in the heart of all mankind.
If we look beyond Blue Willow, the characters play beautifully into this account.
Before time, a Lover craved the company of his beautiful companion. He built her a garden in which to live. Before He brought her there, he made sure everything she needed was provided. She walked freely in the garden day after day with Him and they talked intimately. He told her to enjoy the garden to her heart’s desire. He warned her of one tree that would bring her harm, but directed her attention to far more wonderful trees that gave her food and longevity. He was beautiful, she was beautiful, and everything around them was beautiful. Only beauty existed in the world.
But there was another “lover” who pursued her. He craved her as well, but only as one to own and abuse. He would pervert beauty and woo her. She fell for him at the forbidden tree, when there were so many others for her to enjoy. She would seal her own fate, causing the love that was true and pure to become broken…forbidden.
Their meeting place sat empty, waiting for her to come and call on her True Love. But there was now a deep chasm between her and the place of admiration. She could not reach Him.
In a hidden place, her Lover, the Builder of the garden, had been constructing a bridge to cross. Creating the bridge was grueling work, but it was worth it. The vision of their unity made all the suffering worthwhile. The love that she thought forever forbidden was shown to her again.
The Lover sent comrades to lead her to the path He made. One showed her the Light, that Eternal Flame that embodied the One who loved her. Another showed her the letters that He had written, full of the wisdom and affection He thought of her while she was away. The other friend brought only himself to listen and encourage her on the journey back to Him. This friend often carried messages to Him on her behalf when she didn’t feel she could talk to Him herself.
She felt strongly for Him, but feared that He could never really accept her again. She was shamefully aware of her guilt in the presence of His Perfection and Love. Her desire and doubt tossed her about in ghost filled waters. She plunged to her death there, but fully immersed in the water, He swiftly pulled her from the sea. She now not only breathed, she felt new and fully alive! It was like she had been reborn.
Now she walks freely and frequently to the place of adoration. The sanctuary seems to rise out of the rocks He formed in the garden so long ago. Here, they rendezvous and talk of the day they will meet in the air; two beautiful souls that will never be ensnared or separated.
Blown by a warm wind, the willow tree wavers its arms, flinging the seeds of this Love to as many that will let it grow.