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I visited the Metropolitan Museum a few days ago to see their current show on Japanese Edo Period paintings. I stopped for a while in front of the 2-panel screen (above).  It was painted around 1778 by Yosa Buson and is called, “Lone Traveler in Wintry Mountains”.  The scene Buson paints, with ink and gold leaf on paper,  is stark with bare trees and bleak mountains.  A lone traveler (shown in the lower left) makes his way along a narrow path towards a thatched hut.  The wall text notes that Buson’s paintings “frequently include motifs such as a path or stream that suggests the passage of time”.

After I came home,  I looked at a small watercolor I painted 4 years ago and a year after my husband’s death.  It was also of a lone traveler shown in the moonlight walking along a perilous mountain road.  The traveler stands looking ahead at no clear path around the edge of the mountain.

I contemplated how I might repaint that today with a wider path.

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