Bend in the Road, Litchfield, CT

This painting was done after a night walk on my second to last day in Litchfield. Night walks can feel desolate or comforting, or both and many other things in-between.

I tend to feel most at home in the world at night. Is there something cozy in the closed-in darkness? Or is there something comforting in daytime's order and definition being turned off, shapes shifting, shadows and ambiguity conspiring with the neglected edges of consciousness to suggest that dreams and visions might matter more than the daily preoccupations? Or maybe it's the honesty of indeterminancy, of sky opening up to boundless space, of a simpler order binding all things, of what can be felt when eyes relax into the darkenss of unknowing.

There can be a simplicity to painting night scenes, technical simplicity, that frees one up to work more boldly, with more expressive force. The emotionally expressive aspect of painting can become more obvious or eloquent. I'm not saying that happens here, but you can see how it might.

I don't think this little painting, this modest effort at night poetry, had any particular effect on my uncle. But, on the last day, things shifted. Maybe it was the cumulative effect of all the paintings. Maybe some guests are easier to enjoy when you know they are leaving soon. Maybe it had nothing to do with me. But, for some reason, when he and my aunt took me out for dinner at his country club, he was more thoroughly relaxed, friendly and engaged than I'd ever known him to be around me.