Old Frog Pond, Harvard, MA
Ahisma is an outdoor sculpture placed in the pond of Old Frog Pond at 38 Eldridge Road in Harvard, MA. The piece will be on display from early May to October 13, 2019. The sculpture consists of five pieces, two large lotus flowers, two leaves, and a lotus bud. Colorful metal straps decorate the landscape surrounding the sculpture. The sculpture is a team effort between Lynn Simmons and myself.
We chose the title Ahimsa because of its rich Sanskrit meaning:
“Respect for all living things and avoidance of violence towards others, living and non-living" and “the interconnectivity of all beings.”
The poet Greg Lowenberg was chosen to write a poem inspired by Ahimsa:
Rain come dawn,
the air a grayer shade than water.
I watch droplets bounce under my steps,
against my waking thoughts.
Each moves forward, collects a willing grain of sediment,
and slides downward.
Oxygen dissolves, particles settle, surface patters.
In the no space between them, the lotus rises,
floating her only thing.
If I were there and not here, I might fill with gases,
bob next to her floral spectacle, her flattened leaves,
tessellate into the elements and fill the same space.
But she attracts the beetle,
who flies smitten into her viscous bowl,
only to deliriously crawl back out the next day.
She can channel air to her roots; aerenchyma her unmatchable talent.
Such is the way she asserts her presence, yet
unlike this woodsy flaneur, does no harm.
I am already gone,
considering my incomplete escape
from her voiceless lesson.
I am soaked and all I hear is patter.
I head for drier ground through shades of gray,
above the lotus.