Somber anniversary, tender hearts

Sometime after 9/11/01, an artist in New York City organized a show in which artists could respond to the terrorist attack. The show, which was called The Unity Canvas, was to be displayed just before or around the one-year anniversary.

The envelope I'd sent with my painting in it in March 2002.

The envelope I’d sent with my painting in it in March 2002.

I responded to the call for artists to create a 12×12 canvas. I mailed the painting to New York but the envelope was returned undeliverable. My memory is fuzzy but I think I called someone and was told I had the right address and they didn’t know why it wasn’t delivered.

Backside of package still taped up

Backside of package still taped up

I don’t think I tried to resend it. It has been in this package ever since. Before I sent it away, pictures were taken of the painting but I don’t know where those pictures are now, likely on a zip disk somewhere in a box, in stacks of boxes awaiting a burst of ambitious energy to sort and purge. Does anyone use zip drives anymore? I have one of those somewhere too, in a box, in a stack. I wonder if I could even plug it into these new-fangled modern computers.

On this solemn anniversary, I think I will open this package and have a look at the painting I did so long ago. So much has changed since then, but I will never forget 9/11/01. My heart was broken. And though time heals, my heart is still tender around the lives that were lost and the families who were left without their loved ones.

This is the painting I haven't seen since 2002

This is the painting I haven’t seen since 2002