more colour studies LOVE by writer Nikaela Peters




Green: The human eye can see green in more shades than any other colour.  This makes evolutionary sense: herbivores needed to pick the right plants, carnivores needed to spot camouflaged prey.  No longer scanning our environment for dinner, our evolved eyes now simply luxuriate in the verdant variety.

Green:  We wait on the dock for the boat to pick us up.   The sky is ominous; weird green clouds.  The dock is rotting in places.  I am sitting on a cooler holding the baby.  The rest of our bags and blankets and pillows and children mark different spots on the dock.  I imagine us from the point of view of the approaching boat to look like one of those living statues – arranged amongst our belongings just so.  Someone standing, someone sitting – children and sleeping bags at different heights.  When the boat arrives we encourage the boys to say hello to the two teenagers driving it.  By way of introduction Thom says: “Both these guys are studiers.”  Then, explaining that to the teenagers: “Ives wants to be a studier when he grows up.”  The children stare at the boat drivers.  Someone says something about the wind picking up and a storm moving in.

Green:  Later that weekend at the cabin I have my best swim of the summer between two storms.  The water is eirily calm and green and the lake is entirely mine.  The air is colder than the water.  My kids call to me from the deck of the cabin and I catch glimpses of one and then another when I raise my head between strokes.  I yell up something about how wondrous the water is and then hear Thom saying to the boys: “Have you noticed that when your mum is really happy the world lights up?”  I dive back down.  I see a loon.

Green: Chloryfil. Algae. Luck. Envy. Summer groceries. A highschool hockey jersey.  A baseball field. 

Green:  “Gretna Green”:  A Scottish town just over the border from England.  In the late 1700s, English teenagers whose parents objected to their union eloped over the border to Scotland and were married by blacksmiths in “Gretna Green”.  (Gretna Green was short on priests and lax with laws).  I imagine the couples as fragile.  Small bodies dwarfed in their clothes.   Boys with bows at the napes of their necks, girls with kerchiefs like baby bonnets.  A series of shapes – blooming busts, ballooning hips, tiny ankles and knees.   Figures trying to gain purchase; trying to grab hold of hard land; to say I love you and have it mean something.  The blacksmiths must have felt how feels to be with teenagers, especially teenagers in love.   That nauseating (green) feeling of beholding squeamish potential that resists being beheld.  The blacksmiths held the weddings in their shops, amidst the iron and anvils.  The components of the nativity are all there: a runaway couple, an unexpected location, animals tethered outside, magic in a commonplace hovel, a resulting communion.  Green: a Christmas wreath.

Green: Peter Pan.  Kale juice.  The jungle, the prairies, the mountains, the earth.  A Tyrannosaurus Rex.  Mold. 

Green: A puppet frog and his song.

Green: The Green Zone.  Safety in the chaos.  Green is the storm and the calm in the middle.  It’s what’s underneath (teeming with life) and the mask winter wears.

Green:  The day before he starts Grade One we go for a walk and he collects acorns.  We see a green giant water bug in a puddle on the sidewalk and he is so excited that we talk about it for the rest of our long walk.  We talk about the fact that we saw it, that we didn’t expect to, that is was as big as his baby brother’s foot.  He says he is excited to tell his dad.  He says it is the perfect bug to see the day before he starts Grade One, like a summer send off, a bug summer send off.







All words and photos by Nikaela Marie

Thank you always Nikaela