happy ray #10 pottery, potters, and nancy kevin


Clay, pottery and potters are on my heart in a BIG way lately, and the law of attraction is working like magic.

Recently I was gifted a tub of air-dry clay. Because I create programs for girls and women I’ve become the benefactor of many different crafty-creative-useful remnants gifted from friends who trust me to put them to use.

My mother recently gifted me two beautiful clay pieces made by a NY potter; a very large plate perfect to hold my family’s weekly fruit,  and a very small bowl perfect for my daily yogurt. Both radiant works full of splendor!

Last week I shared the delightful short film about potter Beatrice Wood. I’m especially inspired by potters; their powerful ability to take raw earth and use their life energy and intention to transform into objects of beauty, meaning and usefulness. (Perhaps because I long to be one myself? One day…)

I started playing with clay and made some lovely little clay faces using a mold my aunt (an amazing potter herself) recently gave me. I didn’t sculpt them myself, but I did have to work, correct and buff the imperfections and thankfully remembered how to make “slip”, a silky liquid combination of clay and water that makes the clay appear flawless. (Hmmmm, ok, I’m digressing, but now I’m contemplating the idea of “slip” in the context of human imperfections …. what is human “slip”??? Hmmm, sorry, muse for another time.)

A week ago after taking part in a special spiritual women’s retreat focused on self love and self kindness, I decided to treat myself to a thrift shopping excursion. I prefaced the trip by asking the universe (and the thrift shop) to expose me to things that would remind me of the wonders of the retreat, creativity and kindness, my soul work, and women’s connectivity and feminine spirit.

The universe did not disappoint.

I found a delightful butterfly bracelet, reminding me that each and every human being has the possibility to metamorph-asize into something ever-present, light and life propagating. perhaps reflecting a conversation shared during the retreat.

I found a simple plaque about one of my favorite things and my religion: KINDNESS. It says
“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” ~Aesop

And I found a beautiful clay Moon Goddess lantern created by the late potter Nancy Kevin.


Isn’t she magical?!!!!

I recently began learning about the Goddess Pele; the goddess of fire, volcanoes, lightning, and passionate desire. This little lantern IS Pele to me. She even looks like a volcano, don’t you think?

After bringing her home and placing a small tealight in her vessel, I was reminded of our inner light: The light that is always there, whether we see it or not. The light that sometimes dims to ourselves and others, but the light that is always burning, perhaps well beyond our final breath. This beautiful piece reminded me of the stars I saw during the retreat: Stars we glimpse at night that have long been gone from a physical reality, and yet still are visible to our human physically present form.

After removing the thrift store price tag from her bottom, I was excited to discover the creatress’s name on the base: Nancy Kevin. I googled and found some information about the late Nancy Kevin, a potter, wife and mother, beloved to many, feminine spiritualist, and women’s circle participant.

Nancy died in 2008. I was sad to learn that the beautiful object before me was created by a radiant light who was no longer a physical presence in our world. But somehow I felt like Nancy herself guided me to find her.  Remember, I asked for a treasure that would remind me of my own soul journey and nurturing self-kindness in women. Indeed, finding this little treasure affirmed my wishes and more.

From her friend Janine Maves’ online tribute I learned a lot about Nancy and her one precious life.  Janine wrote,
                  “Nancy played a key role in the development of the feminist spirituality movement at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Raleigh.  She drew strength from her women’s group, which has been meeting actively for 20 years.  With the support of Richard and WomanSpirit, Nancy dove into her work as a potter, finding a spiritual connection with clay, producing wonderful sculptural and functional pieces, and sharing her potter’s passion with her students at Pullen Art Center.  “Through the clay and into your hands” was her means of encouraging people to reconnect to the earth and all elements of nature. “

I have contacted Nancy’s family and have offered this lovely piece to come back home to them, and to remind them of beloved Nancy’s own inner light; a light that is eternal.

May these images and my reflection serve to remind us of the power of our inner LIGHTS: We will never know how far our LIGHT travels.

blessings and love always,
(aspiring potter)

5 thoughts on “happy ray #10 pottery, potters, and nancy kevin

  1. Oh my! JVs friend Amnon took me to Pullen in Sept to encourage me to get into pottery as I had mentioned that I wanted to several times but was afraid it would be too expensive. He convinced me otherwise, and I’m taking the intro class at Sertoma, but will get my studio card at Pullen as it’s closer to me. The intro class wasn’t offered there this fall and you must take it first $95 for 6 weeks, then bag of clay and tools $40, then $65 annual card fee. Then you only pay for clay, firing is included in card fee unless you do something really big or raku which is extra. I love it and have a couple of books if you want to borrow.

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