Nine for a Kiss

by | Dec 8, 2018

Egg tempera painting of nine birds

Nine For a Kiss, painting by Daniel Ambrose

Sunday morning sun is rejuvenating after the cold rains. Palm leaves rustle overhead and the sea breeze brings a scent of flowers—brings luminous memories of faraway faces and places.

I open the house to the balmy air—to purify—dispel the sleepless ghosts of predawn dreams.

The salty breeze that licks my soul brings the ocean. The ocean carries the rivers and rains that replenish her. Waters remember the clouds that fill them. One thing becomes another.

The ashes of my sweet cat Puppy rest in a white box. In time I’ll know how to consecrate them to honor his life for the abiding comfort he gave me daily.

Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh teaches there is no birth, no death, only a continuation. Matter becomes another form, we do not disappear. I find comfort in a celestial continuum.

The birds moving about shallow waters in my painting, Nine for a Kiss, are long gone. Their bones nourish the earth. The beauty of their memory continues as Art.

“Memory is the place where our vanished days secretly gather.” – John O’Donohue 

I bask in the warmth beside tropical green life planted in hope several Springs ago and gaze upon the sky’s reflection in my coffee.  Clouds tremor in the tannin depths and I sink into their spell. Circling. Each day renews the circle of hope.

Hope is a threshold, a continuation.

Somewhere on a distant shore she is longing too, or maybe she is reading by a winter fire. Are you rocking on your porch cradling a cup of coffee or tea in early sunshine? Do you hear the primal song of life’s wonder?

Yesterday, there was always talk of Someday. There is no someday, only today. Gratitude, peace and joy are in this moment, not someday. Only Love now.

Still, in the long gaze across time, I once strove to build a house of love upon a summit of dreams. Yearning’s embers never die. Dreamers are destined to wander eternal the valley’s of beautiful longing.

In the dawning of each moment a new hope is born.

A flower of peace unfolds.


  1. Marylee sanders

    Beautiful Daniel….. prose and painting!

  2. Annie

    Beautiful writings once again. I just get carried away in thoughts no sitting on front porch sipping coffee this morning. About 7 inches of beautiful white snow. And still coming down. About the only thing to do right now is to be looking out the window
    Have a blessed day.

  3. DJ

    Beautiful painting and words. I wonder if a little of Puppys’ ashes added to your egg tempera paint would guide your hand to a beautiful tribute. A painting that will touch your heart every time you look at it. May sound a little strange but may heal your heart a little.

  4. Daniel Ambrose

    DJ, that is an unusual and interesting idea. I started a portrait of him in tempera. Maybe immortalize a little bit of him in a painting.

  5. Nan

    Daniel, you seem to be living a delicate balance between despair and hope,which is reflected beautifully in your work. It’s never easy losing a pet. They give us unconditional love.
    I wish you the peace and love you share with everyone through your paintings. Your work is breathtaking!

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