Tender Agenda


in the wake of the US election?

bird nest heart painting art Swain

Tender Agenda
Sally Swain © original art

I painted Tender Agenda in

another era, but it seems to fit the moment.

For me in my micro world, it fits.

I am surrounded by old, old people. Some have crumbling bodies. Some have crumbling minds, Their creativity continues to emerge.

For us in our macro world, Tender Agenda seems to fit too. I don’t do party politics in Art and Soul Space blog. We’re here for nurturing creativity, yet this moment is different.

Friends and acquaintances on Facebook and in the flesh are pulsing with shock, hurt, disbelief at events playing themselves out on the Big World stage. Even downunder, in the Land of Oz, we are affected.

Tender Agenda.

The dear little bird-woman has a black heart.

The black is not bad.

It is sad.

Today I cry tears of black paint.

Tissues catch the paint as it drips and drops. I gain succour from watching the crying paint trickle and slide its way down to the ground, to the welcoming bed of tissues.

black paint tears art

Today I cry tears of black paint
Sally Swain © original art

The dear little bird-woman

is surrounded by twigs and tissue.

It’s a nest, of sorts.

A nest to hold grief and self-care.

It’s a nest to ease the bird-woman through the fierce flux;

through the rampaging ravages of dismissive disregard for the most vulnerable members of our global community.

I believe in the value of allowing space for mourning,

for shedding black tears.

I believe in the value of connecting with each other during raw times.

We feel and see each other in our realness. And we build and create from here.

Create what?

Who knows?


I think of Joanna Macy’s work

facilitating people to move

from Despair to Empowerment.

As I support an inner and outer Tender Agenda,

feathers of hope re-emerge.

My message to you?
If you are churned up about world politics (or anything, really), I encourage you to

  • Give yourself permission to feel your feelings.
  • Reach out to someone. 
  • Make art.

Please don’t feel you have to be alone in your tumult.

I don’t know much.

I don’t have shiny answers or constructive analysis, but I have a few battered beliefs.


I believe that it is from this place of allowing our feelings,  of bringing our true selves to one another, making use of creative expression, that we can turn towards authentic, supported action.

Swain art bird tenderness

Tender Agenda
Sally Swain

bird nest heart painting art Swain

Tender Agenda
Sally Swain © original art


8 thoughts on “Tender Agenda

    • You are welcome, dear Linda. Certainly, our courageous hearts are being tested, if a little pummelled, at the moment. I hope we can continue to respond with care, compassion, community, creativity. All those good Cs!


Comments are closed.