The Grout Monster came over before our open studio. She grouted pendants, picture frames and a house number with ease. Then came the sunflower. The GM removed the painter’s tape after grouting, revealing a berm around the edge. One petal reached past the others and broke through the berm, and she had the inspiration to begin carving the still malleable grout with a blade, tracing all the contours.
She thanked me when she was done. She had found it meditative. She asked me what mandala meant. It is a sacred circle.
Her stepfather had died that week, and she told me about asking the funeral director to put the chairs in a circle. This was the one thing she wanted, that her family could see each other and tell stories about her stepfather.
In her grief, she created intricate beauty, both in the honoring of her stepfather, and in delicately outlined petals.