My Studio is My Wild

my studio is my wild
house plants adorn my antique wood desk
window ledges are alive

succulents bonsai fern
climbers bamboo money plant
African violets orchids and
flowering geraniums

i bring the outside in
plants rocks wood
bees nest birds nests
feathers and shells

these wonders of nature
these grounding elements
they are my companions
in all their form shape texture
and greenness
they are home
together we are home

i mustn’t forget to mention the fish
for in this picture something would be
greatly amiss

all you need to do is look ahead at the wall
and there it is
the most majestic stripped bass
who in all its grandness and form
laid on my worktable

from the ocean
from the wild
it came to me
not just for awhile
but for eternity

this has been my practice
the art of gyotaku
an ancient form of nature printing

surrounded by fish
they speak of impermanence
this intimate experience with the life and death of nature
is sacred
always humbling

these fish
symbols of abundance freedom creativity
transformation and eternity
they are home in the wild
home in the wild of my studio
home in the wild of my heart


Photograph and poem by Rachel Reeve

Nova Scotia based visual artist Rachel Reeve, a graduate of NSCAD University has been honing her skills in gyotaku. As an interdisciplinary artist her practice also includes, drawing, installation, design and writing. Primarily working in art education for fifteen years, in 2018 she stepped back into her studio full-time.