Chapter One

‘People are mad for love – and there is a lot of love in what we do.’

When the fabulous Flor-artist and author, Dr Lisa Cooper said this, at an event that Jessie and I were attending on the eve of us launching Love after love; my heart skipped a beat and I made a whooping noise  – a heckle of sorts,  that couldn’t be camouflaged or translated as anything other than what it was, but an explosion of joy!  The kind of joy that erupts when you hear someone say exactly what you feel in your heart!  As we too are mad for love and there is a load of Love, with a capital L, in all that we do.  Love is our raison d’etre. 

Not just in regard to this business, but more importantly the business of living. Loving is central to me and Jessie. Mother and daughter. It’s crazy to think that we were once one body and I wonder sometimes, if our loving stems from our soul’s deepest knowing - that love shared, is the very source of life?  

Love is the hearth and heart of all that we are and intend here at Love after love. Not the Hallmark kind of love. Not the noun - but the verb; the doing thing. The one that asks us to give of ourselves, to one another. To pay attention to the world, to laugh, listen and cry; to forgive, to empathise.  To find beauty, create meaning and generate love.

We LOVE love. So much so, that years ago, we made up a word, scootch, to express what we can’t, when we love something or someone so much that our hearts feel like bursting and we’re rendered speechless. Our shoulders seem to round involuntarily when we say it, as if in embrace, as our hands reach towards our hearts. The soul has a feel for scootch!  You can say it any way you want, but the way we say it, it rhymes with butch. And it’s the scootchiest feeling in the world for us now, to share with you, what we love.

Thank goodness our metaphors go on ahead of us, that they know before we do, because if we were dependant on ways of coming to knowledge, we would be speechless still;  but I have a hunch that perhaps in the same way we had to make up a word to express a love that we can’t, we had to find and make beautiful things too. Perhaps Love after love is everything, we can say to you.  

At heart, Jessie and I are insatiable story tellers, dreamers, designers, travellers, and readers, inviting you to join us, not just to share in the beauty we’ve designed and sourced from around the world but to share stories and ideas – books, music, art and artists that we love and are inspired by and collaborate with. We dream of creating a community of Lovers of meaningful beauty, to support one another in living scootchily.

Before I leave you, I’d love to share the very beginning; the conception of Love after love, Jessie and I sitting at the kitchen table, sipping tea, reflecting on a feast in a poem we adore, by Derek Walcott.

I’m sure you will find your own meaning within it, but for me, this poem has become almost a prayer; a piece I return to, to remember myself. Not the image you see in the mirror, but the whole world of you, that lies beneath. Walcott’s beautiful words feel like a call to action, to gratitude, to authenticity and an acknowledgement, that what we want from others, already exists within us, and it is that – that love, that we must give to ourselves…  

Before, after, always

Catherine x

Love After Love

The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other's welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was yourself.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

Derek Walcott

 

2 comments

No words. No sound…a pulse.
Provocative and stirring.

I am in debt, thank you.

Cheers
Robin

Robin Hall January 27, 2020

Love this, Catherine. I too love love!

Jazz January 23, 2020

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