Age, and a Gift

February 8th, 2018

Night Flight, 40×30, acrylic. Any mistakes?
Actually this one no longer exists. I used is as underpainting for one of new series on The Beatitudes. (Click for another of that.)

Remember your creator in the days of your youth . . . *

That’s a Biblical statement about getting old. By that time I’ll be glad if I can remember anything at all.

Sometimes I feel I’ve been gifted. I can paint. It’s a gift. But I don’t mean it like that.

What I mean is I’ve been given something that can keep me occupied, interested and growing for the rest of my life. That is a gift.

As I’ve long since learned, if you find what you love you won’t have to work another day in your life.

Find it now, in the days of your youth, before the memory goes, the hands shake, the ears get dull and the vision dims.

Speaking of vision, you’ll remember I reported on the operation for my detached retina. I was told it would take about two months to normalize. It’s been about a month and a half and I’m about three-quarters there. In spite of it, I’ve been painting right along . . . even with the nuisance. Same with reading.

Impressionists Edgar DeGas and Claude Monet both had bad eyes toward the end, and they kept on painting. Did some of their best work.

My dad, with his multitude of abilities, continued his side-line tax business long after he retired from his day job. He loved it, and people loved him. He had loyal clients. My mother served tea and everybody became friends. One time I asked him, “Dad, when are you going to retire from this?” His answer was that his clients wouldn’t let him, “Besides,” he added, “I think it’s good for me.”

Good answer. No denial of reality but still moving ahead.

But then he started making mistakes. It was a problem. He finally quit.

Me, I don’t do tax forms. I paint. The nice thing for me: If I start making mistakes no one will know.


The art might even get better.

(Currently in San Luis Obispo at sister’s, heading for Salinas to be with kids, then to Ojai to be with each other.)

* Ecclesiastes 12:1


Write a comment
  1. Sue Feb 8, 2018
    2:53 pm

    Thanks for stopping! Love the story about Dad!

  2. Elizabeth Hammond Feb 8, 2018
    4:06 pm

    Yes Hyatt. Trying new things we may make lots of “mistakes”! But are they? Thanks for your wonderful blogs. Elizabeth Hammond

  3. Mabel Pittman Feb 8, 2018
    7:34 pm

    Thanks! Great reminder since my 83rd is tomorrow……if I tried to paint, it might look like one big mistake, but might provide some laughter…….speaking of which, a great gift God has given me that sticks around…….mainly because of the Lord’s promised joy…….not necessarily always something funny or happy “things.” Yes……we remember your dad never quitting….what a joy!

  4. Christiane Feb 8, 2018
    9:25 pm

    Thanks for this.

  5. Terry & Patricia Lampel Feb 9, 2018
    4:07 am

    Thanks for the encouraging post, Hyatt! What could be finer than to find personal fulfillment, while at the same time honoring Christ–at any age! ;o)

  6. jcl Feb 9, 2018
    7:04 am

    This sounds like signs of the times, as we inch along. Hope your eye recovers perfectly.

  7. don graves Feb 9, 2018
    7:09 am

    Your painting is loved by many, but also you words of wisdom

  8. Alison Feb 9, 2018
    8:11 am

    So enjoy reading what you write, for what it is you have to say and for always being able to hear your voice in it.

  9. Suszanne Droney Feb 9, 2018
    10:03 am

    Hyatt….I agree with you for those of us who have been blessed with the creativity within and can express it outwardly. Let’s keep on painting until the very end…!!!

  10. Ashley Feb 9, 2018
    10:09 am

    Wise as always.

    I like this warning by W.B. Yeats:

    Through winter-time we call on spring,
    And through the spring on summer call,
    And when abounding hedges ring
    Declare that winter’s best of all;
    And after that there’s nothing good
    Because the spring-time has not come –
    Nor know that what disturbs our blood
    Is but its longing for the tomb.

  11. Betty Feb 9, 2018
    1:07 pm

    Hyatt, I wish I could receive your blog daily as your art and your words are so inspiring. Thank you for sharing!! Sending our love to you and Anne and all of your family.

  12. Ursula Becker Feb 9, 2018
    3:11 pm

    Oh, thank you for this! I always had a desire to paint but never took the time. I’m a senior and am thankful that God gave me this gift and can use now without feeling guilty.
    Ecclesiastes 3:1 To everything there is a season

  13. Cynthia Finley Feb 9, 2018
    4:40 pm

    Your Dad reminds me of my Mom. She assisted my father in his tax business all of their married life. After Dad died, she continued. Until she was 80 and feared making mistakes. Their clients loved them, trusted them, and those still living expressed gratitude at their funerals.

  14. Laurel Hardt Feb 9, 2018
    8:29 pm

    I love it! We had a bro in the Lord, an old black ex-coal miner, a pastor, who had advanced Alzheimer’s and was in a care-home. Slumped in his wheelchair, he heard my husband ask him how he was. He lifted his weary head long enough to say : “The great I Am is taking care of me.” Then he dropped his head back on his chest. He couldn’t talk any more than that. I was told that in earlier days, he regretted not being able to get down to pray on his knees anymore.

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