We are F.r.o.g.s. in Residence, Part I

Friendship underneath
Reveling the
Other; energetic
Green peaches of coloration;
Skin; continues.

(Acrostic Golden Shovel with Tracy Hicks, us f.r.o.g.s., et. al.)
Visit  Keep Digging Deeper to learn more about the Acrostic Golden Shovel

We are frogs; in residence.  
Friendships of entanglement;
Patchworks of the healing thread-bare;
Lovers in play.

Temporary beings,

we are residents of this forest hugging our souls.   Lush-magic trees I watched from my bedside window; Winter in Spring into Summer’s caress.  We are responsible to and for each other.  I think Tracy might have lived this like none other I have ever known.

Please read about the Acrostic Golden Shovel via the link above.  Tamyka Bell, a wonderfully energetic author I met on the Medium platform, introduced me to this collaborative poetry.  Tracy was a natural connective pathway of relationships.  Look at the diagram on Keep Digging Deeper.  This web of people and poetry echoes Tracy.  Echoes what Tracy came by naturally.

What better poetic form for all us F.R.O.G.S. to carry on

In 2013, he started what he shared with me as the development of “his legacy”; an artist residency with a particular emphasis on the gift of time.  He just began; casually.  Inviting friends to come and enjoy what the Appalachian Mountains, his friendship and mentorship, community, and his food had to offer.  The time was yours to work.  Solitude or community was your choice.

He believed that even simple and necessary everyday life such as fixing yourself food and cell phones can distract from the creative process.  In the fall of 2013, I ventured to North Carolina for five weeks; fell in love with deciduous tree beauty and met a group of new friends.

Tracy even endeared me to Facebook.  The way he shared life and art through his eyes, and the way he connected people he thought should know each other.  Beyond that, people who connected just because they were connected to Tracy.

Why Frogs?

underneath the energetic coloration continues” is a phrase from Tracy’s Smithsonian research comparing Amphibian skin to human skin.  Deeply concerned about the decline of the Amphibian population as it relates to the health of the human population, Tracy brought scientists and artists together in celebration and concern for these beautiful creatures.  These days, frogs are synonymous with thoughts of Tracy.  Prayer, thought, and memory unceasing.

As life turns, my husband and I moved here one year ago.  Victoria invited us here for the healthcare I needed and to be a semi-permanent artist in residence. How that Holy Spirit sneaks through you and me.  The clouds immerse us here as mystic mist, and friendships grow as natural as wild violets.

Where do F.R.O.G.S. grow?

How about here, at least for a little while.  Tracy and I started collaborating on a book. He purchased pages from an autobiographical book I abandoned years ago.  Turned around and ask to collaborate with them.  My original intention was to finish the book as intended; in collaboration.  Some of the pages were seemingly lost.

Book in Progress, Tracy Hicks and Connie Karleta Sales, image ©Tracy Hicks
Book in Progress, Tracy Hicks and Connie Karleta Sales, image ©Tracy Hicks

Pictured below is Tracy’s flat-file in his studio.  Playful mysteries of relationships as I enjoy calling it.  He continually arranged and documented, and yes, made connections with this very flat-file.  You see, he might be arranging things, take an image, two, or a hundred, and post a few to Facebook.  Meanwhile, you find yourself tagged, along with others (known and unknown).  It does not take long to find yourself immersed in new relationships.

Tracy's Flat-Files, ©Tracy Hicks
Tracy’s Flat-Files, September 2014 ©Tracy Hicks

What do the two have in common?  Two weeks ago in preparing for my husband’s surgery, we were moving the flat files and of course enjoying everything inside in the process.  There is always something new to discover every time I peek.

There in plain site were the missing pages.  For a year I have been looking into these drawers and never did the pages reveal themselves.

Trust the process; of creativity, of life, of friendship.  Trust the ghosts in the walls.  Trust.  Enjoy.  Live.

What is Part I, Connie,

my flowery, long-winded child?  F.r.o.g.s. that is what.  How do frogs sing?  Acrostic Golden Shovel style!

paint much love, always,
Connie Karleta Sales
a.k.a. This Crooked Little Flower

P.S. What is Part II, Connie?  in residence

Tracy left a legacy far beyond I suspect he ever did know or comprehend. Perhaps he did.  That is only for him to have truly known.

To be continued. . .

Past/Future Resident Artists

Coming 2018

Samuel L. Paden

Summer 2014

Colleen Terrell Comer

Fall 2013

Connie Karleta Sales

Spring 2013

Barnaby Fitzgerald
Kim Alexander