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29 September, 2007

kanno doko - Interacting communion

"To Paint the Portrait of the Bird" by JACQUES PREVERT

First paint a cage
with an open door
Then paint
something pretty
something simple
something beautiful
something useful
for the bird.

Then place the canvas against a tree
in a garden
in a wood
or in a forest.

Hide behind the tree
without speaking
without moving...

Sometimes the bird comes quickly
but he may take long years
before deciding.
Don't get discouraged.
Wait years if necessary.

How fast or how slowly the bird comes
has nothing to do with the success
of the picture.

When the bird comes
if he comes
observe the most profound silence
till the bird enters the cage
and when he has entered
gently close the door with a brush.

Then erase all the bars one by one
taking care not to touch any of the bird's feathers.
Then paint the portrait of the tree
choosing the most beautiful of its branches
for the bird.
Paint also the green foliage and the wind's freshness
and dust of the sun
and the noise of the creatures in the grass in the summer heat.

And then wait for the bird to decide to sing.

If the bird does not sing
it's a bad sign,
a sign that the painting is bad.
But if he sings it is a good sign,
a sign that you can sing.

So, then, so very gently, you pull out
one of the bird's feathers
and you write your name in a corner of the picture.

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