Kimberly Wachtel

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Occupation Artist, Singer, Gardener
Location Cummington, Massachusetts
Introduction I come to a doorway. It is wooden, and hand-carved with stars and suns that remind me of my place on earth. I pass through this threshold, and I enter another time, another place, another way. I see tanned, wrinkled hands painting a yellow flower on a white-washed, masonry stove. Red geraniums brighten a window sill. Streams of sunlight shine through an intricately cut paper curtain. Under a thatched roof, atop a high bed, stitch by stitch, a dream garden sprouts to fertile life: hand-embroidered fruits and flowers populate plump, homespun pillows and feather quilts. A kitchen garden pulses with life just beyond the cottage window: rosemary, roses, sunflowers, nasturtium and dill. I share a simple life, hard work, and gratitude. We thank the creator for the cycle. We acknowledge deep mysteries and pass them on through simple symbols. We work with our hands in paper cutouts and wood carving, bright paint and embroidery: birth, life, death. The sacred and the everyday walk hand and hand. The toil on the land touches the spirits of the sky. I've entered the place where my ancestor’s souls reside. My roots reach and pulled me here. My Slavic soul has returned home.