The Grapevine Art & Soul Salon

Musings on Being and Becoming Human


Issue 6: Fall 2006

AT HOME here are writers speaking in a style more conversational than studied for an audience who might be seated on a front porch at night watching fireflies create random small rays to light up the listening, or in the dining room of an ancient inn with lamps and perhaps a hearth fire to kindle community.

It takes only one or two steps of the imagination to move through the dusk to the dining room at the inn or the porch of a house or, by daylight, to a backyard garden for picking grapes and for gossiping, a verbal mode associated with the term grapevine. We say I heard it on the grapevine, referring to rumor, advance news of interest to the community, sometimes scandal, always a dramatic story or piece of a story, circulating, making the rounds, lingering on the surface even when it suggests hidden things.

Normally we think of grapevine gossip as circulating by word of mouth in a common language. There is a children's game, played sometimes by adults as well, in which participants sit in a circle. One person begins the game by whispering in the ear of the person to the right some phrase or statement that then gets whispered around the circle until it reaches the left ear of the person who started the "gossip." That person says out loud whatever he or she heard in the final transmission. The words spoken at the beginning might have been, "From dawn to dusk I walk in beauty." Such a statement could become, by the end of the round, "A bomb was thrust by a dog in blue." Imagine, if such distortion can occur in words of the same language, how much potential for miscommunication there is during times of extensive cultural transmigrations such as are going on now.

The example is by way of introducing a new column that we are calling WorldVoices to acknowledge the broad cultural challenge and promise in our conversations about art and soul and what it means to be human. This column replaces Parallel Worlds, though we will continue exploring myth, fiction and metaphor in our presentations. Ravi Kumar, who has written in previous salons about his experiences in India, is the host of WorldVoices.

Another column called Views and Reviews has been added to take the overflow from Miscellany and structure it for easier reading.

The SALON presents a variety of storytellers and image makers and thinkers, from promising beginners to seasoned artists of mature and full-bodied talents.

The Grapevine Art & Soul Salon welcomes comments from visitors. Use the Contact button to send e-mails that will be forwarded to appropriate persons.

Editor: Barbara Knott
Image Design: Bill Kennedy
Contributing Writers: Jonathan Knott, Ravi Kumar, Bill Kennedy, Nancy Law, Anne Lovett, Charles Knott, Anne Webster

Copyright ©2006 Barbara Knott ·