Two Women Seated ~ Charles Malcolm Campbell
Today's Cleveland Museum of Art Facebook Image
Why did this painting strike me so today?
I think, as I reflect upon it, of three immediate reasons.
Yesterday, another woman made a humorous and yet serious remark ~ we all know what those are ~ about the behavior of women in groups. A remark which revealed an inner adoption of a disturbing and belittling stereotype.
A few days ago, I listened to a sermon in which a young man made a joke ~ received appreciatively by his congregation minus one ~ demeaning to women nurses. I am sure he would be appalled to hear what he said as I heard it, but there it was.
And on the sites I am visiting for Lent, I am a little over-inundated by Father language for God. OK, more than a little.
I've had a number of reasons over the past few weeks to consider the formative experiences of my life. And among them, the friendship of women looms as a sunny, serious, and sometimes stormy theme.
In my family of origin? Not so much. No sisters and mother gone much too soon.
In my own family? Oh, that daughter of mine ~ grown into such a beautiful and wise friend and companion.
And in between? All those years ~ eight! ~ of single-gender schools. Brilliant and funny and compassionate and effective women in almost every place and situation since. Today, a group of women who have shared life in our community for 25-plus years, an internet group of friends who have done the same for . . . how long? I don't know . . . and the bereaved moms who have been my lifeline countless times in the middle of the night. Plus women here and there who have become great friends in all sorts of ways having to do with writing and birding and photography and ministry and politics and spirituality.
I love this painting.