The Wood Potter
My brother the "Wood Potter". Actually this is a title bestowed upon him by my little sister Judy. An artist “extraordinaire”
His most popular forte is carving "Twalking Sticks" which are the most beautiful staffs I have ever experienced. Treasures they are. He uses the term "Twalking" because when anyone sees them they have to stop to inquire about their magical shapes. They do talk to you.
I have purchased from him approximately twenty over the years, mostly for gifts, (called me his patron saint) and have kept two of his three greatest creations.
"In Our Hands" is my totem staff.
One night I had the most beautiful vision of a totem staff and labored until dawn trying to draw and describe the concept. I shared this with my Beloved Brother and we agreed to an exchange. I would build a computer for him and his partner of the time and he would endeavor to make sense of my scribbling. Some two years later, after numerous attempts that did not satisfy the artist, I held in my hands the mirror of my vision.
My other staff "Wizard's Magic" was a gift from him. I took this one to China with me and it commanded such awe that the Chinese airport security would not put it through the x-ray scanner. Neat because it has a secret compartment that contained a crystal. A velvet lined chamber under the wizard's beard.
The third and his greatest creation "Spirits of Fire" I have given to Natalie. My poem of the same title describes this wonder.
The Wood Potter's name is Gregory Allan Parke. His talent is amazing .... oil, acrylic, water colors, pencil sketches. He is about six foot two inches tall and has only one eye. Lost the other when he was eight years old. Yet he is a truly unique observer of life. Very little escapes his attention. He is also one of the most intelligent men that has graced my life. Countless hours we have spent debating and sometimes even discussing the many facets of Being. I have learnt much from this brother and feel blessed that I have been able to contribute to his journey as well.
At times he exemplified the tortured soul of the great artist, as have so many Masters looking for their true identity. He acknowledges Spirit and walks in harmony with Mother Earth and all our relations. But he does not accept the concept of an everlasting soul. Death is final, the end of the game. He does not seem to know who he really is, yet is in tune with his spirit in such a beautiful way.
I have to chuckle when I consider our many similarities, such as sharing the same birth date (he is three years younger), remembering how we must have looked like Mutt and Jeff walking down the beach promenade. I love him dearly.
One of Greg's finest attributes is his ability to live in the Now and focus his creative energy. Being so close to him was a glorious opportunity for each of us to experience the many facets of our being.
Yet I saw in him his shadow-self fighting to deny his connection to the Divine inside. I saw the struggle and the pain in his heart. I saw how his journey had been forged by a greater power. I saw him on the threshold to the ultimate Grand Adventure yet fighting every step of the surrender to his Higher Self. I saw in him a tortured Soul yearning to take control. I saw the radiant glory of a most beautiful Being awaiting that final fire that would consume the shadows and release the True Power of His Love. And I KNEW that I was looking into a mirror of myself.
Two of the many facets of Greg, and ones that he will be the first to attest to, are his tendency to be a perfectionist and the other to procrastinate.
I remember one day working with him, painting the interior of a house. At the end of the day I was exhausted trying to keep up to his pace. He looked at me, smiling and said "Stephen you can paint but you are not a painter".
The rest of the story yet awaits the blessing of my pen.