Many of the quilts I make are made for a particular person; Bee, Babbit, and K have more quilts than they could shake a stick at, a very large stick. Others only find homes with the passage of time, when something happens: a quilt I made with my Asbury fabrics only found its proper place with my stepmother in the months that cancer imposed it ineluctable pull (she grew up on the Jersey shore, the quilt a reminder of a wonderful life).
And now another quilt has found its home, its place. This time with a friend from back in my art school days. As you may have guessed if you’ve followed this space, or over on Facebookland, I don’t make friends easily; I fully understand that my inability to turn off my analytical brain can be, well, difficult for others. To put it bluntly, I can be complicated. But when I do forge friendships I feel them deeply, and even if I am not in constant contact, those bonds are resolute.
Anderson is one of those few people who worked through the weeds. We’ve been talking about finding a quilt for him for quite a while, but I just hadn’t found the right one, the connection. Simply sending along a bed quilt didn’t seem quite right; as our friendship was forged in the grind of grad school it was a question of art, a piece that spoke to his experience. It was a conceptual problem, not a material one.
I’m not sure why the pieces so suddenly fell into place, but the this quilt has found its home. While the quilt was made almost two years ago, it only recently came clear where it needed to go. I suppose I had something else in mind for it that stood in the way, a preconception of where it should go that barred me from seeing where it needed to go.
But now it is there. It is home.
Here is where I might normally explain why, but my words could never do that justice. That isn’t my story; it is his. So please, take an additional moment or two to read Anderson’s words, his story, the reason why Trayvon is now a part of his home.
(Seriously, go read this. Not only is it filled with meaningful reflection; Anderson is a beautiful writer. Go. Now. You won’t regret it…)
I regard myself as profoundly lucky to have met Anderson, and the many others who entered my life during my art school journeys. And I am eternally grateful to Anderson for having braved the tangle of complexity that is me and offered his friendship.
And for opening his home to this quilt…