I realized that I spent a lot of time alone in July. Much of it was spent in the back of Aloha Sunday, in our collaborative workspace we've come to call Studio Tropicál. It's where I paint and ponder and write and write. It's made me think a lot about how the creating process can be lonely. I think we've established a pretty strong creative community around these parts, but inevitably when it boils down to it, art has the ability to isolate me from all the things I identify myself with...to make me stand alone in the middle of the room and state who I am and what I believe in enough to put out into the world. In a recent conversation with my friend Charlie, I started to think about whether creation was a lonely process for the original Creator. I don't have the answer, but the thought of what the Creator :: f e e l s :: does make my heart skip some beats. So as July and loads of dreamy shenanigans wrap up, that's what I leave you with...."We are the poems. Play to the end." The phrase "nous sommes les poemes" in French, means-we are the poems. "Al Fine," the focal point of this piece, is a musical term that I remember being yelled out by my piano teacher during lessons when I was a young girl. I'd be playing and all my attention would be focused on getting through a particularly grinding part of the composition...my entire body would lean in and my eyes were a few inches from the page. She would pull back my body and yell, "al fine!" which meant that I needed to start from the beginning of that section and play it again to the end. Lately it's reminding me that the lonely parts of creating will never go away...we'll have to play through them again, but to be true to yourself (sometimes the loneliest of things) is poetry, and we are to play to the end.