Let the River Answer

 Michael Salemi

This past year has been a year of losses.  Not the least of these was the death of the poet Leonard Cohen.  Among my generation, Cohen is best known for the song “Suzanne,” the woman who lives by the river and, when faced with a difficult situation, “let’s the river answer.”  That song and the poetry it holds was, for me, the motivation for our show.

Rivers are tricky.  On most days they are peaceful.  But on some they are raw power and will have their own way.

It’s like that in woodturning.  On most days, the lathe is a peaceful place to work.  The wood is gentle and the turner translates it into peaceful and pleasant shapes that beg to be held. But sometimes, the wood is not peaceful.  It is gnarly, with voids and grain patterns unsuitable for pleasant shapes. Confronted by wood like that it is best if the turner let’s the wood be what it will.

Our show has been a joy.  It is always fun, and a little frightening, to offer a new body of work to gallery regulars. Our community supports us so well and, in turn, we are driven as artists to live up to that support. We know that we too must let the river answer.


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