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Authenticity

Updated on November 17, 2013

XXX.

Original Watercolor by my departed friend, Vivian.
Original Watercolor by my departed friend, Vivian.

Everyone must write

His own book,

Compose his own music

And live each new day

As it arrives.

   Those who know what they must do

      Are freest to

         And quickest to renew

            And live most fully.


______© Nellieanna H. Hay


Vivian

Vivian was a special person. In a way she was vivid as her name and in many ways, she was subdued as a mouse. She was older than I and from an even more formal generation, as well as a more formal background, beiing related to the Havilands of revered porcelain china dinnerware fame. There was something of an Edith Wharton character about her. It was so natural, it just seemed to BE her, who she really was.

But unlike those celestial denizens of Wharton's early 20th century upscale drawing rooms and lavish lifestyles whose ordered lives seem almost transfixed in its era, Vivian had married someone who was of a more ordinary societal background: in the terms of her generation, "someone beneath her" which changed everything she might have expected.


As it was, she had simply accepted as fact that her own status was so determined by her retro-step and tried to make the most of it. One detected the deep, half-buried personal reality, but she was not wont to reveal it casually, nor to complain.

We did become close enough, however, that I had a chance to know her beneath the surface.


I met them much later when her husband retired and they moved to Dallas to be close to their daughter, Anne. They took a modest apartment and joined in the rather fun-loving circle of Anne's friends which overlapped a circle of friends of which I was a part. We had frequent parties, boat excursions, celebrated birthdays and holidays and enjoyed a special camaraderie. Vivian reveled in it in her dignified way and her husband seemed to enjoy it as well.

Beyond question, Roland was a good man who adored her and they were a devoted couple who celebrated an anniversary of quite a few decades. Their one child was their pride and joy. There was much to admire and respect about this dedication, endurance and self-giving.

But one sensed a deep unfilled chasm in Vivian's soul. When I saw "The Thorn Birds", I was immediaely reminded of Vivian in the fictional character, Fiona, the mother of the heroine in the story, with the similarity in both marital situation, selfless courage and undying love of the husbands. It makes one glad to not be the judge of others' life choices.

Whatever the circumstances, Vivian had that rare ability to transform anything she touched into something of rare and unique beauty and to imbue it with an enviable quality of superb excellence. She was an inspiration in so many ways and she seemed to really care about me.

However, and possibly not surprisingly, she was the first to doubt a decision I made to end an unfulfilling relationship by offering an almost classic remark for a situation in which a woman chooses being on her own over being trapped: She said, "But where will you go, What will you do?"

So illustrates how thoroughly indoctrinated was in conformity that it was beyond her comprehension that one might be able even to exist and make it as a separate, whole person. I could only reassure her that I would find my way, as I did. Unfortunately, somewhat in accordance with the mores she followed and subscribed to, she "chose up sides" and I found myself outside of the entire group of which I'd been an integral part for six years.

The price of authenticity can be high, while either choice can be almost devastating.

II've wanted to share her painting with my beloved Hub friends for quite awhile, and the theme of this hub suits it, I think.




I've wished that Vivian had more fully realized her own vast potential before she passed on, though I respect her choice. Perhaps sharing this lovely painting of hers which she gave me many years ago may give her a little of the well-deserved recognition she almost totally missed during her life.


I've been among the many

And been among the few

I've sounded out their souls

As best I could

And all I really know, as yet

Is me and you.

But that makes - two!

Just as it should!



______© Nellieanna H. Hay












Sometimes

I feel

So much untamed,

So free

Of doubt

Or fear,

I think I would have been

Well named,

Had I been called

A deer.


____© Nellieanna H. Hay

Written at age 12




A Facet of Authenticity - Aging Gracefully

The theme here is Authenticity, which, in its human sense, means being genuinely oneself. It is not primarily linked to or dependent upon a particular background, gender, age or stage of life. But what about changes in those most intrinsic parts of one's being?

My friend Vivian illustrates a person whose social vantage point changed and she responded in her own way in order to remain true to herself.

So, - especially in a fluid area, - such as status or age, one's entire perspective is challenged. One finds oneself challenged to rise to the occasion in order to maintain one's fullest and most genuine self-hood when major changes are in progress and as one continues forward. Surely that, in itself, is one of the best opportunities to be all one really is. Pretense is self-defeating, while authenticity enhances the stage of life and the state of one's being!

Various life changes which affect one's sense of being are numerous, but aging is surely among the most affecting and progressive of such changes and is one everyone faces eventually if they survive.

I found this video after I'd written the main parts of this hub, and it was almost surreal to find something which so perfectly and dramatically illustrates the entire point and spirt of what I want to share as it relates the factor of aging to authenticity and the importance of authenticity as it relates to aging.



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    • Nellieanna profile image
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      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      ;-) When I was little my eldest sister wore a fragrance made by Ciro. (a Spanish pronunciation. The sound of "i" is like a long "e", "o" is a quick "o" sound and the sound of "c" is just plain "c".) The name of the fragrance was "Surrender". I'd never read the words so when she spoke of Ciro's Surrender, I thought she was saying Sea Rose Surrender. Kids! tee hee

    • arb profile image

      arb 6 years ago from oregon

      :) I love surrender!

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      OK. Plenty of room in the complicity circle and the innocent circle is almost unoccupied these days! Come on in; - the water's fine!

    • arb profile image

      arb 6 years ago from oregon

      Complicity always screams innocent! I think I will share the claim.

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Of course you will have to! :-) But you opened them for yourself!! Don't blame me! I'm innocent, I tell you - innocent!

    • arb profile image

      arb 6 years ago from oregon

      The fertile flux! The flitering flux! I had things all figured out and see what you've done. You've opened my can of worms. I will have to write.

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Our responses to externals are what we make of them, I think. But true contentment within oneself is a permeating state of being, I think. If it is flittering, then it's still in its process of becoming, which is not a bad thing at all. I used to have a name for that - I called it my "fertile flux", once I began to feel ok about it, knowing it was in process and not the end of hope. Then when I felt it, I could feel it as a positive and start being open to the "fertility" of it within the "flux". It was quite constructive. When I realized that I was not fluxing but was more able to tap into the fertility of the ongoing of life, I understood it from a bit more centered place. But if I felt fluxy at any time, it would be OK. And it could happen. One just needs more fortitude then.

      My prisons were largely in my mind, by the way, though perhaps appearing unimaginably real. One must agree to those, however subliminally; that's the clue. Freedom came from recognizing my own padlocks. There are remnants and reminders of having been there.

    • arb profile image

      arb 6 years ago from oregon

      Alone or otherwise, the prison is always there. Sometimes we just share them with cellmates. Contentment, like the butterfly, settles for awhile, then silly thing flitters for awhile, content, I suspect, in whatever he chooses to do. Perhaps contentment isn't a feeling at all, Maybe, it's the thing we make from it?

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      What a great poem! So full of truth and wisdom.

      This seems to me to be an intelligent solution to living with whatever constraints exist without getting your knickers in a knot. I'd call that personal integrity and authenticity. (integrity here meaning integrated)

      My theory is that a contented person need not be disturbed by or awakened to other possibilities which might become disturbing, unless there is indication that the person is already aware of/disturbed by them. Even then, it's a big risk to open up a can of worms for someone else. It's risky enough for oneself!

    • arb profile image

      arb 6 years ago from oregon

      I am content with prisons, so long as I come and go

      a home in which I live, with a door I do not know

      something in my choosing, diminishes the threat

      prisons are erected to satisfy a debt

      but if the debt I owe, imagined from the rest

      then best I leave it with them, I come and go as guest!

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Sligobay - I have missed you! So glad to see you again. Thank you for the New Year best wishes - and, of course, same to you! And thank you for the lovely compliments.

      Yes, I can vividly see Vivian in my mind's eye. She added to my life's experience. Seemed that whatever se touched, she left her imprint upon. She would have loved meeting and mingling with the Hubbies. She wrote, too, but I have none of her work. It had the same delicacy as her art.

      Thanks again! Hugs and welcome back!

    • sligobay profile image

      sligobay 6 years ago from east of the equator

      Nellieanna: Best wishes for a happy New Year and let it be a healthy and prosperous one for you. You were no doubt, a 'deer' at twelve and the 'real deal' now. Vivian is perched on the branch of her Haviland family tree and finally 'free' of the inauthentic social graces which colored her feathers and caused her to roost. She was and is your friend and has been forgiven through the homage you pay to her artistry. Your own words and thoughts are sonorous. Thank you for letting your beauty take flight from your comfortable perch.

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      daydreamer - I'm so pleased that you love it! Thanks!!

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      AngelintheBurgh - Thank you! I checked your hubsite, too -and truly liked your poem!

    • daydreamer13 profile image

      daydreamer13 6 years ago

      Absolutely love this hub! What a great read!

    • AngelntheBurgh profile image

      AngelntheBurgh 6 years ago from Pittsburgh

      Breathtaking...

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Lisa - yes - you are absolutely correct. I'd only add that authenticity, while always gratifying and rewarding to oneself, needn't always cost highly. Perhaps it is when it overreaches its own sphere that it raises the ante. And at other times, just BEING does raise the ante simply for that. I guess it depends on the security others have in their own authenticity, huh? Some are threatened by anyone whose being is secure and there is no way to protect them from their fears. But, then, one cannot supply or even prop up someone else's sense of being, can one?

      A very wise friend once told me that trying to prop me up would prevent us both from growing! This is true!

      My first marriage was a disaster from the beginning till its end 18 years later in 1972. Long story, as I perceive you'd understand.

      Thanks for the visit and your perspective.

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Hello, hello - thank you again for your warm and welcome appreciation of my efforts. I truly have not tried to achieve any standard other than truthfully expressing what I have felt and experienced in words which - originally - spoke back to me when I needed that input in a very difficult life situation. I didn't expect the words to be shared beyond a few very close friends, and only a few were shared with them. So pride didn't enter into it.

      But I am proud that these words and lines are touching quite a few others' sensibilities now that I am sharing them here at last. I still write regularly when the muse grabs me, but my huge surge of writing was 40 or so years ago - and those poems have only just now begun to be "out of the bag". As I've mentioned -they've been handwritten in a stack of thick notebooks which I'm working at transcribing to word processor. Prior to this, there were only a few even typed up - and a few scattered on pages of my personal website I started about a dozen years ago, which has not sought or gotten a lot of traffic.

      Yes Vivian would be pleased if she were still alive and knew of this tribute to her. She was a person so capable of appreciation - as you are!

    • Lisa HW profile image

      Lisa HW 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      Nellieanna, this was nice. The price for authenticity may be high, but the rewards for authenticity are something I think only those committed to being "authentic" get to realize.

      By the way, I don't know when you ended your marriage, but when I left my own I was faced with a bunch of people who had so little faith in my ability to happily and comfortable be on my own, I had all kinds of people doing what they could to prevent the whole thing from moving forward. (Talk about getting "support", eh? LOL )

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

      You are such a wonderful person and can be so pround of yourself being able to achieve such wonderful writing and poetry. I am so pleased to have met you through Hubpages and enjoy your brilliant writing. You wrote a great tribute to Vivien and I am sure she'll be very pleased. Thank you for sharing.

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      SP - I am honored. Thank you and hugs!

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Sa`ge, your comments are perceptive, as always. Thank you for reading and understanding. Hugs back.

    • The Suburban Poet profile image

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      It's hard to define dignity but I'd tell someone to check out nellieanna and get back to me on that.... class and dignity seem to be innate with some people... you either got it or you don't and I'm not surprised at all that I'm not the first one to say this to you...

    • Sa`ge profile image

      Sa`ge 6 years ago from Barefoot Island

      Beautiful write about a beautiful life and the wonderful transformations that take place. The line that says it all for me is:

      "Pretense is self-defeating, while authenticity enhances the stage of life and the state of one's being!"

      Thank you for sharing the beauty of your poetry and the life of your friend Vivian.

      Thank you for taking in life as you do, that you may write so beautifully for us all. :D Aloha - Hugs :D

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Wow, that is quite a tribute, SP!! You would get a smile if you could view the picture in my mind that word brings to it. I was 15 and away at school. The son of the president of the university of which this academy was a part teased me all the time about my "dignity". LOL. If we'd had the old-fashioned desks with the built-in inkwells, he'd have dipped my pigtails into the ink. hehe

      I very much appreciate the compliment and it is amazing that it's an aura which has seemed to cling for so long! It amazed me then because I was so super-shy. I didn't know how Tommy Morris came to the conclusion that I had "dignity". I am only scarcely more aware of it now! Thank you. And coming from one I admire as I do you, it's really gratifying!

      If you had any of what I am or know - you'd be ahead of me, since you're already fully-equipped! Thank you for that compliment, too, though But of course you do achieve your own greatness. For sure!!

    • The Suburban Poet profile image

      The Suburban Poet 6 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Nellieanna,

      Your gentleness is something that I could never achieve... you seem so calm and light-hearted yet with so much passion. I would suppose the word for you My "Deer" is dignity...

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Unfortunately there are more "masked" folks walking around than those without the masks. Of course, underneath, everyone is "real". No one can fully escape his or her own reality. Without even realizing it at times, we are all operating only as subjective beings. Hiding it doesn't change that, though it may change someone else's perception of who we are, if only to perceive that we ARE hiding whatever we're hiding. haha. My adage is "the truth will out". It eventually does come out of hiding, diesnt it?

      Thanks for visiting my hubsite. I am happy to welcome you!

    • theindiaphile profile image

      theindiaphile 6 years ago from London

      A great piece about an increasingly scarce quality!

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Dream On - you are the dearest person! I wonder if you even know how dear you are! If I've been a good influence, I could not be happier. But it's reciprocal. You always remind me how precious and essential it is to stay positive but also feel all one's feelings. You don't use any masks or armor. You are just the epitome of authenticity! Your influence is as sweet and positive as a warm hug and reassurance. Thank you for being YOU! And thank you for the lovely comments.

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Dearest Martie! Ah - yes. How sad an underlying acceptance anything bad IN PREFERENCE to being without. Being without a bad substitute provides a person with a state of being in which a good and authentic one could arise. And if not - there is nothing bad about being with oneself without some desperate choice of any-old-thing rather than nothing. LOL

      But when one has misjudged, there are many variables to be considered, as we know. One doesn’t choose a mate in a vacuum. Others become part of the whole reality and we cannot ignore how our choices at that point will affect them. We usually have the best vantage point for assessing that. It may be a matter of choosing the lesser damages from among only poor choices and then courageously doing what we must to handle that course and make the best of it. Hindsight may or may not prove our assessments the better ones, but even our own changes in vantage point can be ignoring the other factors present at the times which had to be taken into account and which did determine what we chose to do then. So all that really matters is to be responsible and to keep climbing. It’s the old story of when having fallen into a hole, the only steps available are up and out but those are never suddenly out. If rescued from above, one still has the experience of it to deal with. The actual climb helps resolve much which a quick exit would miss.

      Yes,I know Vivian didn’t fit into a submissive role. She had a deep insight which provided her with a wonderful self-assured way to be who she was in any situation. She chose to fit into the life situation she had chosen with Roland and she did it with grace and dignity. He adored her for herself, whether or not he could fully discern her depth and true magnificence. He was more average and was authentic to himself, as well. Neither of them felt cheated and there was genuine love between them. Either of them might have chosen a more fitting companion, but they surely couldn’t have found more willing and loving ones.

      I think Vivian had more concern for her daughter’s marital situation than for her own. Anne’s husband had pulled himself up from humble beginnings to achielve a PhD degree and a very good position in his career - and never let anyone forget it! He was rigid, self-righteous and condescending. LOL. So Vivian perceived that her daughter’s life was not as happy as it could have been. Dr. Jim was even condescending toward Vivian and Roland,. That was at best a mild source of dismay for Vivian. Roland didn’t pay attention. But I would guess that knowing her own fine background and her own cultivated tastes and talents, it was distressing to have someone like Jim treat her with a sort of self-important contempt. Of course he was a poster boy for a man really grounded and self-actualized himself so no doubt, he was defending his own wobbly self-esteem, but it was a bit distressing to Vivian, mostly for her daughter’s & grand-childen's sakes.

      Otherwise, she and Roland did things they could both enjoy. One was swimmng! They almost lived around the pool at their apartment complex all summer! Both were as tan as berries and just loved it. Vivian had her painting and other creative projects set up to pursue in their little apartment, where everything reflected her good taste. She was among the most authentic people I knew. So was Roland. He was his own person and made no apologies. He was a good man and had a good disposition.

      Thanks for the lovely words about my “sometimes feel so much untamed” poem and your sweet appreciation of me. When I read a few of those letters written in my teens and early 20s, I was wishing I could share them with you. I still plan to dig out some more and read them. My ex made it a point to destroy all of my keepsakes he could lay his hands on in an effort to destroy “me”. It is quite a “find” to discover my parents saved these letters! Sort of like a journal or diary of how it was then, as life was happening then.

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Aw, Christopheranton. That feels like a warm fuzzy. You’re the dear! I’m sure that you and Vivian would have been kindred spirits. Both have depth and quiet dignity which is not a willow in the wind, but rooted and real.

      Not to worry. I realize who I AM and know my worth, Christopher. It’s not a measurement of comparitive value. It’s all there is "in here" where I am. Who cares if it’s good or some other standard. It FEELS good to be myself and I’ve learned to trust being myself - through some severe challenges to it, so I’m very happy to BE. I have a lot of discernment as well, so I can see the value of my output. But you know how it is. What one does seems natural and it is oneself BEING oneself. If it’s rated “good” - that’s nice. But even if it’s not noticed at all, it is no less authentic and valuable to oneself. There’s a kind of realistic appraisal on one’s own stuff. We need to ask whether it is honest more than how “good” it is. I couldn’t maintain a level of quality which was not honest. If it seems consistently good, that gives a kind of validity to who I am which feels rewarding. One of my best rewards is to be correctly perceived and helpful simultaneously. So thank you, dear man.

      Yes! I also hope that couple on the video have many more years of productive happy years! I was blown away by them when I ran across the video. I was merely looking for a video of some song which expressed the authenitcity theme when I found it. It was like a miracle to find something so perfect for illustrating it.

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      K9 - I always perceive you as someone of great depth. When one is aware of the nature of the challenges one is facing - along with one’s strengths and limits in facing them, especially strengths - it’s no less challenging, but it’s like having a constant built-in friend to help - oneself! What a lovely thing to feel one’s growth and I can only say I’m honored it have presented something which prompted it for you. It’s YOUR own progress and all yours. But being a little part of it feels very nice. Thank you, kind and generous person!

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      My dear Alexandra - Yes, I can feel your thrust and forward-upper movement. You’ve always been authentic and it’s simply a new stepping stone as you progress on, being your own beautiful self with changes life brings. It makes tears come to my eyes. I can feel the challenges you’re dealing with - none of the details but the internal choices which are so real and urgent as one is “there” and literally “on the move” as the person one IS. SOOO true what you said about any attempt to twist ourselves to fit another image, whether it’s what others expect of us, what we have outgrown or even what we aspire to. All that has honest effects, but the prize is finding that core and center of our being which is beyond the externals and IS our true aspirations. And the most important is to love each step along the way, as it IS, even if it’s a transitional kind of reality. It’s all valuable and we don’t have to struggle to become all we are. The prize is not a new construct, but the truth of our being which has always been “in there” and often has emerged to determine our current choices and to help us through it all.

      The sooner we let it have the precedence, - to BE who we truly ARE - the more wonderful it is and the fewer internal obstacles we’ll deal with. What is really nice is that somehow many of the externals either recognize the authenticity and happily accept it or just fade into place where their ideas are them and not us, so we are ok with it. If it takes a few wrinkles and sags to get to this clarity and firm inner self, it’s well worth it. Besides, we needn’t be as wrinkles and saggy as we might think! LOL. In fact, inner peace is surely the best possible cosmetic.

    • Nellieanna profile image
      Author

      Nellieanna Hay 6 years ago from TEXAS

      Ken, your comments are always treasures which deserve thieir own framework but this is just superb! What a wonderful account of your personal emergence and odyssey. Living brings us all to ever-new experiences and challenges, but each is a new opportunity for growth and deepening. All of it has value. The secret is learning to accept and ENJOY the changes, as you’re doindg.

      Sometimes it seems like we humans are too much in an “either/or” mindset. Sure, it is good being young and “full of piss and vinegar” while one is. That doesn’t mean there is anything less wonderful about it when one is mature and full of proven confidence and peace. Learning to discern what really matters and especially becoming comfortable in one’s own skin is truly like rewards. One has the ability to try new things and travel new ground along with a real knowledge of where to expect one’s strengths and limitations to assist or deter one, AND a better judgment of whether the probable results & gains are worth it as compared with other choices. One is more responsive to life and less reactive to its many aggravations. There is a serenity which is also fully aware and “with-it”.

      Looking back at one’s journey so far is pretty amusing. Seeing one’s own thread of character and identity as we struggled to become is quite a spectacle. I found a box of letters I wrote my parents starting when I first went away to school at 15 and through most of my situations as long as they lived. I always loved to write & wrote long letters. It’s amazing how my real being weaves all through them, but so obvious how tenuous it felt at the times as external situations were ever changing and challenging but the way I attempted to deal with them had a surprising consistency and that was in spite of the mistaken perceptions of many of those around me whom I looked up to and trusted. I suppose that those conditions in one’s life are the very grist which bring out the real - the authentic - parts of oneself which become the calm confidence we can enjoy in later years.

      Friends and loved ones, as well as some opponents along the way help us adjust our own self-image enough to keep it realistic. Others see us as their views permit, as we appear against the entire backdrop of our surroundings, highly colored by their own viewpoint, so it is rarely with the true perception of who we are from inside out. We must learn to take what fits as good information, let go of what doesn’t and trust our own “inside out” self perception. For some of us that is really difficult to learn, if “others” have been more emphatic and seem more “right”. Finally, though, we realize that “they” are all individuals just like us and their judgments do nor define us. Our own ability to perceive is our best assessment of our actual being. When we finally get to that point, what happens is that we present a more integrated “self” which “they” can more easily see and accept as authentic. It’s a gift of having lived long enough to get to there.

      And that is what becomes so clear about you, Ken. You’re at that better vantage point where self-acceptance is a reality and has roots. It is very clear to others - and it’s so easy to maintain once it no longer feels necessary to “play the parts” others expect or demand! What a liberation!!

      Thanks for your clarity and wonderful presence!

    • DREAM ON profile image

      DREAM ON 7 years ago

      You have lived a life that is full of wonders.To share the story about your friend Vivian and to end with the you tube video was touching.I watch the years go by and God willing where I will be in 46 more years.I will always cherish the thoughts that you have shared here on the hub pages.You have opened my eyes and ears.You have made me listen when I wanted to talk.You made me watch when I was ready to listen.You keep me on my tippy toes and following you is like taking a breath of fresh air.Thanks and I hope you have a Grand Thanksgiving with all the trimmings.

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 7 years ago from South Africa

      Vivian reminds me of one of my friends who believes ‘rather has a bad husband than no husband at all’. Some women can not function independently; they are able to be submissive in such a graceful way that the onlooker easily believes she is happy and contented. Unfortunately this kind of woman, when married to an insensitive, abusive husband, easily takes flight to alcohol and drugs. (This is merely a sketchy analysis of the average submissive female most men prefer to marry and not of Vivian).

      Her paintings are beautiful – light and sensitive touches of a colored brush on cloth - exposing to me her timid and submissive nature.

      Beautiful poem you’ve written at the age of 12, Nellieanna. I can clearly see a deer in you, a wise female deer, keeping clear of confrontations, willing and able to run gracefully away from danger, just to go on doing what she was born to do as if nothing just scared her to another area. She will calm and proudly view happenings around her, and, after evaluated the possible danger, graciously go on gracing, or graciously create a distance between herself and that danger.

      Thanks for yet another look into your beautiful heart.

    • christopheranton profile image

      Christopher Antony Meade 7 years ago from Gillingham Kent. United Kingdom

      Sometimes

      I feel

      So much untamed,

      So free

      Of doubt

      Or fear,

      I think I would have been

      Well named,

      Had I been called

      A deer.

      But you are a deer Nellieanna, or at least a dear.

      That was a lovely hub. The story of Vivian was so vivid, and so wisely and lovingly painted, that I almost feel that I know her now myself. Nellieanna you are one of the great unspoiled talents of the world, and the best thing about you is that you never seem to realise how good you really are.

      Keep writing, so I can keep enjoying reading.

      I really liked your video as well. That couple were really impressive, and obviously still mad about each other. I hope they have many more happy years.

    • K9keystrokes profile image

      India Arnold 7 years ago from Northern, California

      Your treasured memory of Vivian is to be honored; and so you have within the words you place here this day. A wonderful tribute to your friend and an amazing peek into your own depth of spirit and of knowing just who you are. I am taking much away with me after reading this work. I believe I have grown an inch or two since drinking in its meaning. I am again honored to be in such grand company as yours.

      ~Always Choose Love~

      K9

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      SilverGenes 7 years ago

      Nellieanna, this particular piece is one I will read and reread many times. At this point in my life, I am facing all these things and having to let go of what other people may think or wish me to be. It's a journey I find difficult at times but one day soon I hope to come out the other side, happy with who I am and no longer listening to the critical voices whether they are from my own inner being or from other people. After all, if we twist ourselves to be that which we are not, we will only be resentful :)

      The video is especially beautiful. Thank you for this look at true beauty, love, and the reminder that authenticity is everything.

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      saddlerider1 7 years ago

      You keep raising the bar Nellieanna. Your writing is divine and it enlightens the readers and causes us all to think. This work is absolutely brilliant, not only do you respect and give tribute to an old friend, but you share her humanity. I to when turning sixty felt the age factor creeping over me and seeing the change in my physical appearance and started to worry about who I was becoming with this new mask.

      Then the light bulb came on and a whole new me was emerging from the ashes. I no longer cared about trivial things as I did as a climbing to the top type of personality. My career was closing and a new moon arising and my priorities evolving that would encompass definite changes to my lifestyle.

      What was important to me became less important. I was like a caterpillar going through the transition into a monarch butterfly and liking what I was seeing. Sure the wrinkles were starting to come out and my personality was getting a little rougher due to me not wanting to be older, but that attitude soon changed:0)) and acceptance was soon realized.

      I began seeing Ken emerge as a person of some quality and worth, someone who had something to give and share with others, like my verse and prose and life experiences. I was no longer a shooting star, but a simple sunrise coming up over the horizon and warming my spirit for living new chapters in my life.

      This poetry you favored us with here Nellieanna is some of your best and most poignant and the video most definitely compliments the beauty of ageing and being proud of who we are and what we have become and recognizing the beauty in our souls.

      What we carry in physical stature ranks way down below who we are as people and shows us the beauty in each and every one of us. Thank you so much for this brilliant write and tribute to each and every one of us. Big Hugs from a loyal and dedicated follower. You Rock...lol

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      Nell -- and it's always my pleasure to welcome you here! Thank you for the lovely comments!

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      Nell Rose 7 years ago from England

      Hi, I always love your beautiful poems, and they pictures always enhance the whole thing, I also enjoyed reading about your friend, and your thoughts, thanks for another wonderful hub cheers nell

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      Thank you, Doug! I appreciate your attention to it and your kind comments!

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      Doug Turner Jr. 7 years ago

      I appreciate your simple yet elegant writing style. The short poem about an imitation rose being odorless was my favorite part. Such a good analogy.

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      Thank you, drbj. I've always treasured that little one, but generally it goes unnoticed. I very much appreciate your notice and obvious full understanding of its metaphor. Makes me feel good through and through!

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      drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

      You already know how much I appreciate you and your inspiring poetry, but this bit especially touched me and I wanted to let you know: "One who loves Gives it forth -

      Like roses, their perfume. But an imitation rose - Is odorless - Regardless of its bloom.

      Perfection, Nellieanna. Thank you.

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      Thirdmillenium, it's my pleasure to welcome you to visit my hubs. I appreciate your wonderful feedback.

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      Merliin, both - peace and the heart, all from living up till now and continuing to. It's such a privilege to share my impressions with good folks. Thank you and hugs.

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      Mentalist Acer - thank you for such insightful words and for coming to read my hub!

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      Dave! Great to see you online. Hope your travels are going well and that you have more opportunities to get online! Was a delight to meet you face-to-face, a genuinel pleasure. I can hear your words, as well, and "see" your expressions as you speak them. Thank you for being the great person you are. Hope you don't mind that I've been telling people! Thanks so much for visiting my hub!

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      thirdmillenium 7 years ago from Here, There, Everywhere

      Thanks in deed, Nelli, for the graceful aging write-up

      It is really difficult to do it but you are very sensible about it. I second Mr Merlin Fraser above

      Thanks

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      Merlin Fraser 7 years ago from Cotswold Hills

      Hi Nellieanna,

      Tell me is there as much peace in your life as there is in your wonderful writing ? Or is this the result of a peaceful loving heart ?

      I can imagine tears come easily to people who read your soft gentle words...

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      Mentalist acer 7 years ago from A Voice in your Mind!

      An authentic personality,leads to an authentic reality,a beautifuly important piece,Nellieanna;)

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      DavePrice 7 years ago from Sugar Grove, Ill

      Nellie this is such a wonderful piece. Having had the blessed joy of meeting you, I can hear your voice as I read the words. It is a beautiful expression of your delightfully beautiful heart, and I count myself blessed to be able to "hear" your words. God bless you for your warmth and insight.

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      VioletSun, Your comments do my heart good. What we all like is to be able to please those who are kind enough to come read our work. My warm thanks to you!

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      FloBe, I thank you! Your response is gratifying, knowing you felt the intention and enjoyed the message!

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      VioletSun 7 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie

      This was lovely, Vivian's art, the glimpses into her, your thoughts, poetry and the Youtube video. Had to share with my sister! Whenever you publish a Hub I know I am going to be treated to beauty through your at and poetry.

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      FloBe 7 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This is a wonderful piece of art! Your words honoring a friend and the impact she had on your life. The thoughts on authenticity and the art of aging. They all flow together in a beautiful symphony of hope. Thank you for sharing.

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      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      I'm honored by your words MT! It really is a broad subject & only touched upon here, but it's something which touches every facet of people's lives.

      I am flattered at that high praise, - but cannot compare with so many great writers. But it's a good thing that it's not a matter of comparing or competing. Writing is such a personal expression that it would be impossible to compare without losing one's own message and authenticity!

      So I am pleased that my writing pleases you! Thani you!

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      Linda Rogers 7 years ago from Minnesota

      Nellieanna-This is such a wonderful hub. The piece on authenticity and your friend Vivian's journey. The wonderful video on aging and how this couple worked through their fears of aging through art which celebrates the seasons of life. Your poetry as always was heavenly. Every time I read your work here, I think you are one of the best writers I have EVER known. Thanks for sharing another incredible hub that inspires and educates.