Monday, April 26, 2010

A Mutual Friend

This entry is dedicated to my dear friend Aleksandra, whose very life, I think, is defined by giving. She expresses herself in so many ways — through her art, and the way she embraces art in its many forms; through the music and other insights she shares in her blogs; through her comments here and elsewhere around the Web; and through her intelligence and humor.

And now I’d like you to meet someone else — a mutual friend of ours. Seventeen years ago and worlds away, Aleksandra sat down and made this drawing:

I can only imagine what was going through her mind at the time and who this person might be. But from the moment he arrived in the mail, together with two lovely cards and a book as a gift, and even before I had dried my eyes, I began to think of him as someone I met in a nineteenth century Russian novel.

The very thought that Aleksandra would entrust me with this — for this drawing is part of her and a silent representative of her dreams — gives me chills. It’s no wonder, then, that I feel it’s already part of the family.

The particulars, then:

A Mutual Friend
by Aleksandra Komlenovic

Mailed from Holland
April 2, 2010

Arrived in Salem
April 23, 2010

[click to enlarge]

With thanks from a mutual friend.


Janice said...

This was a beautiful dedication to your friend William...very touching.

RUDHI - Chance said...

To me HE looks like a Zoroaster's Priest - Keeper of the secret maybe? What means 'mutual'? Ah, I got IT, you got IT, all got IT... Anybody out there?

Wine and Words said...

Some gifts are just big like that...born of marrow they come, life in them, love, salve, cure. You are blessed in this William, for you receive many.

Caio Fernandes said...

andra is great . i always like the things she create .
this is a nice work .

all ways 11 o'clock said...


You have been given a beautiful gift from a wonderful generous artist.

Thank you for sharing this with us.


William Michaelian said...

Thanks, Janice. Aleksandra is a beautiful person.

Rudhi, you are a one-man riot!

Annie... thank you. Your poetic comment is yet another.

Thanks, Caio. And you’ll be glad to know, her drawing and your book are already talking to each other....

Robert, it’s a great pleasure. Thanks. And you’re right about Aleksandra’s generosity. It’s one of her most defining characteristics.

ALeks said...

Now its my turn to cry,tears of joy! And I thought I have asked you in one of the cards to please not write about me(although,secretly I wished you would!Female,go figure it:O})All of this I wished actually to be happening at the grandfinale of your portrait arriving in Salem,at your home, portrait of you which is still waiting,living,unfinished with me,sharing the bad and the better times,silently watching over me as I love to imagine it does!! It was a great comfort last days when I had that bike accident,and I still think this is the way how it is supposed to be!! Cause I know,finally it will come to you.It is a great honour to be your friend William,thank you for your generosity and beauty.Greetings to you and your family and Im happy for our Mutual Friend, he found a good home!!

William Michaelian said...

Aleksandra, it’s true, what could be better than watching it all unfold? The way you describe it, pretty soon the unfinished portrait will be riding a bicycle too!

And no, you didn’t ask me not to write about your gift... unless you wrote it in invisible ink.... and I’m glad you didn’t, because then we would all have missed out on this pleasure.

Thank you again. Our friend is watching me from the bookshelf now. He keeps moving around. He likes the window, too. I think he is about to say something....

ALeks said...

"Oh yes I knew him, I spent years with him,
with his golden and stony substance,
he was a man who was tired -
in Paraguay he left his father and mother,
his sons, his nephews,
his latest in-laws,
his house, his chickens,
and some half-opened books.
They called him to the door.
When he opened it, the police took him,
and they beat him up so much
that he spat blood in France, in Denmark,
in Spain, in Italy, moving about,
and so he died and I stopped seeing his face,
stopped hearing his profound silence ;
then once, on a night of storms,
with snow spreading
a smooth cloak on the mountains,
on horseback, there, far off,
I looked and there was my friend -
his face was formed in stone,
his profile defied the wild weather,
in his nose the wind was muffling
the moaning of the persecuted.
There the exile came to ground.
Changed into stone, he lives in his own country."
The Portrait In The Rock
by Pablo Neruda

Im trying to write you a letter,now for days,Im not sure will I post it,but thank you again! For everything!

William Michaelian said...

In the meantime, Aleksandra, what a beautiful letter this is....

Momo Luna said...

I just discovered her drawings and paintings today :-S because she doesn't upload them on her blog (?) Yeah i am a bit slow. But her art is amazing and very good and as a person she's sweet and a giver. What a great gift William, i can imagine it gives you chills and joy.
To welcome new family is always a heartfelt pleasure.

Sweet greetz!

William Michaelian said...

Hello, Momo Luna! If you just discovered Aleksandra’s artwork, then you have some catching up to do. I know you’ll enjoy it. And just so you know, your beautiful “Torch” card is on the wall very near our “Mutual Friend,” and they’re getting along quite well....