The Royal Oak


Spirit of the Royal Oak
Ageless and ancient the Spirit watches
as the tiny acorn dreams beneath the mouldy forest floor.
She nurtures the potential of its form
and keeps the sleeping seedling safe from harm.
She sees a straight trunk and leafy boughs
and far off cycles of sun and storm and snow;
holding the future of its heart until the time that it should grow...
                                                                                          (poem by Jodieanne)
Keith loved trees. When he was a boy he planted two sycamore leaves in his garden. Both grew into beautiful trees. At Christmas he refused to kill a live tree for us to decorate. No amount of pleading would change his mind. Even the very sensible argument that Christmas trees would not have been born without their uses in our society as decoration, therefore they would be serving their purpose, etc.  could budge him on this. Later I tried the environmental argument that fake trees were non-ecological and was told that we could decorate a fallen branch if I preferred! Trees were sacred living
beings and Keith painted them with reverence.

The Heart of the Royal Oak
You are seeded from royal blood
Each one of you a child of Father-Mother God
and, as such, worthy of the holy task that I preform.
I tend your heart...
the source of all abundance, of health and love.
And when I touch you with my sustenance and light
you are whole.
                                                                  (poem by Jodieanne)
The Heart of the Royal Oak is my favourite painting of all. It was finished and signed on my 36th birthday. I told Keith of my love for it and he gifted it to me as a birthday present. I was over the moon, as you can imagine! Not ten minutes later a lovely young couple walked into Keith's studio over Lanhams and asked how much it was. Keith looked at me, I nodded. He told them and instantly it was sold. In those days each sale was so important as we were raising our family of 6. Instead I own a framed art card of this painting on which he lovingly wrote, "To my beloved Jodieanne" which I shall always treasure.

Fred, the Oak Tree
When our son was seven years old he planted two acorns into a pot as we had no garden. One of them grew into a tree. Philip named the tree Fred. (? < no reason needed when you are seven!) Fred was an indoor tree but to us he had magical properties. He grew two oakapples onto a bough. Now oakapples are formed by a certain wasp that bores into the bark to lay its eggs. The oakapple grows perfectly round as the larvae develop inside. Then they bore out leaving a tiny hole in the oakapple. Our oakapples were complete with tiny holes. We named our art card company Oakapple based on this experience with Fred. Then we learned that Oakapple Day was a little known British holiday created when King Charles ll was saved by hiding in an oak tree on the 29th of May to celebrate his rescue from certain death by the Roundheads following the Battle of Worcester in 1651. Typical of the British populace, they chose to ignore his edict (what kind of holiday do you call THAT?) and the holiday never took root! (A bit of English history that I found fascinating.) For years we took Fred into the gallery on the 29th of May to share him with all of you! He now lives in my daughters' garden, finally having found a permanent home!
                                                                                                                XX Jodieanne

Congratulations for reading this to the end!
Prints of The Spirit of the Royal Oak and The Heart of the Royal Oak are on offer for the reduced price of £50 postage paid in the UK until 31st May 2018.

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