Inspired by a Carrot

 Shannon White Orange Painting

This SUNRISE COLUMN IN ORANGE painting is inspired by a carrot, and is part of my Hope in Hopeless places series.  A couple years ago, I was about to listen to a woman tell the story about losing her daughter, tragically, when I began to picture a carrot.  This seemingly unrelated image began to make sense in context of her words.  As her story unfolded about her loss and journey, I thought of the elusive dangling carrot of hope, the healthy and nutritious attributes of the carrot, the growth process of the carrot, the idea of the taproot and dark soil, the symbolism of the color orange sometimes associated with healing, the metaphor of the sunset and sunrise.  Her story became one of cultivated, deep and eternal faith to flesh out the idea of the hope carrot that was forming in my mind.  At that time, I wrote the following poem, and have been exploring the hope carrot idea, visually, in several pieces since then.  I can now appreciate the hope carrot in the context of my experience with my son’s battle with cancer.  The orange abstract pictured is one of my personal expressions of hope in this process, and will be featured in a Healing Through the Arts Show at the Lawrence Arts Center beginning the middle of the first week in October in conjunction with more work by myself and other artists.  My husband took the picture of my painting in a friend’s studio with dramatic lighting.  I would also like to thank my good friend, an “actual” poet, for critiquing this writing for me.  Thanks to you all!

HOPE CARROT by Shannon White

a single carrot beckons

from the farmers’ market stall,

harvested root of vision and hope

not dangling, but reachable

orange and bright like a crisp sunrise column;

a stout ringed, pointed mass

enhancing sight and health, macrobiotically;

dug from the earthy garden

tugged out of darkness,

heralded by a messenger sprout of truthful green,

the evidence of apparent life

growing under the rich black chalky soil,

struggling to retain and dipense nutrients

wicking dew and damp drenching rains,

a taproot of survival and sustenance.

develop, eternal hope carrot,

food in a world of hunger,

if only through one tiny but faithful seed.


~ by balm on October 2, 2007.

4 Responses to “Inspired by a Carrot”

  1. i think showing the poem with the painting is awesome! i love you. darin

  2. […] Center, Neuroblastoma, Sculpture, Woodworking and Works in Progress My wife Shannon and I entered an art show at the Lawrence Art Center Healing Through the Arts. As ironic as it is, […]

  3. beautiful Shannon, you see beauty in things I overlook, thank you for sharing your poem, painting and journey.

  4. […] Kansas, Neuroblastoma, Oil Painting, Painting, Wood Working, Works in Progress Shannon and I are in a show that is having its reception tonight at the Lawrence Art Center called Healing […]

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