Sunday, January 01, 2023

Wishing you hope

I finished the Still Life with Covid painting:

Still Life with Covid
Acrylic on board. 

It could be better, but I am leaving it. "A work of art is never finished, only abandoned." (source possibly da Vinci) 

I had a wonderful time with the family on Friday, and lots of lovely cuddles with my new baby granddaughter. Strangely, though, I came home feeling older than usual. Partly, it's because I think that Covid has made me deafer and I forgot to take my hearing aids. It wasn't just that, though. I came home with a feeling that perhaps old people are irrelevant.

I shared the thought with Dave and naturally, given his take on life, he agreed. "The best that old people can hope for is that they don't become toothless, fat and smelly."

His dark and bracing view of life always makes me laugh. Since then I've been thinking about my mother and my gran. They both lived into their 90s, and if they were "irrelevant" in their later years  - and I am not saying they were - they were very much loved and they were very loving.  And love is never irrelevant. 

Dave came in as I was drinking my morning tea in bed and said “The headlines are all about people celebrating the New Year. All over the world! What on earth is there to celebrate?” (He used rather fruitier language than this.)

I feel the same as Dave.

But don’t worry, this is not going to be another miserable, moany post. 

I feel bad there has been so much moaning on here this last year. I don’t want 2023 to be the same.

I’m here to say that I hope this year brings you happiness and whatever personal qualities you wish you had. 

I’m wishing myself unselfishness, tact, courage and hope. 

I’m also here to say that I want to take some time off from the blog. When I looked back at this last year’s posts there is so much struggle against despair, so many complaints about the government, more poems than I’ve every shared before. And the reason for this last is that thing that Ted Hughes said about poetry:

I’m hoping that when I come back I’ll be in a better frame of mind and have lots of funny and interesting things to tell you. My brother's just been on the phone and when I told him I was taking a break he said "You can't take a break. People will be disappointed."

When I said I didn't want to moan on endlessly, he said "Well, don't moan. Be positive."

But to my mind the value of the blog is that it's authentic. It has to come from inside me. That's the point of it. 

Somewhere in the back of my head, my mother is saying "Go in the other room, and don't come back until you can be nice."

So I hope to see you in February. 

Or maybe next week. 

Who knows?


And I'll leave you with Greta Thunberg:

"Right now we are in desperate need of hope. But hope is not about pretending that everything will be fine. To me, hope is not something that is given to you, it is something you have to earn, to create. It cannot be gained passively...Hope is taking action."


marmee said...

What a stunning quote ! It is certainly going in my "this is important " book. Have a nice break! See you on the other side!

Anonymous said...

Happy new-year to you! Love your wish for personal qualities you wish you had - bravery & less procrastinating for me, I think 🤔
I shall miss your blog & look forward to your return. Sally 🌱💪💛

Sue Hepworth said...

Happy New Year, Sally. See you later.

Marmee, which quote for you mean? The very last one? I’m saving that one too.

Mandy Redmond said...

Hi Sue

Having just found your blog I love it! I think a lot of older people feel like they are irrelevant, maybe that is a good thing? No responsibilities and you can suit yourself. I can imagine missing the dramatic tension of having to be in all sorts of places and stepping up when needed. I think you are right about being authentic. There are too many people on the internet pretending.

This year I am determined to come and see you both, but I have lost your contact details! I was thinking of coming on a Wednesday, as I don't work on Wednesdays. I have a couple of Wednesdays free in January, or February if that suits you better? My email address is

Lots of love

Mandy xx

Sue Hepworth said...

Hi Mandy, how wonderful to hear from you. Dave is emailing you about a visit.
Love Sue