Some understanding goes a long way


A calm Okanagan lake,  just after sunset but not dark yet

Starry, starry night
Paint your palette blue and grey
Look out on a summer’s day
With eyes that know the darkness in my soul
Shadows on the hills
Sketch the trees and the daffodils
Catch the breeze and the winter chills
In colors on the snowy linen land

2015-01-08 08.53.23

Okanagan Lake again, probably in January


Now I understand
What you tried to say to me
And how you suffered for your sanity
And how you tried to set them free
They would not listen, they did not know how
Perhaps they’ll listen now

sweet 5

Starry, starry night
Flaming flowers that brightly blaze
Swirling clouds in violet haze
Reflect in Vincent’s eyes of china blue
Colors changing hue
Morning fields of amber grain
Weathered faces lined in pain
Are soothed beneath the artist’s loving hand

The lyrics above are from Don McLean – his song Starry Starry Night. The song was written after he read a biography of Van Gogh.  It’s a lovely song.

Vincent Van Gogh suffered from mental illness and his amputated ear, but he could still see beauty and his paintings of the hills and stars outside the bars of his asylum, his paintings never include the bars on the windows. A man in torment.

We can’t tell from the outside what others are dealing with, and they can’t see what you are dealing with either.  People with mental illness aren’t crazy, they are sick.

Internet statistic:  Approximately 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. (46.6 million) experiences mental illness in a given year. Approximately 1 in 25 adults in the U.S. (11.2 million) experiences a serious mental illness in a given year that substantially interferes with or limits one or more major life activities.



About dfolstad58

I live in the South Okanagan. BC. I enjoy reading, exercise, toastmasters. spending time with my son, my daughter, & her husband , and my patient wife. I try to respond personally to every comment on my blog, and in this way I hope to get to know my readers a little bit and and am able to thank readers for their encouragement on what they liked and suggestions on what they would like to see me try in order to improve.
This entry was posted in health, Thinking Out loud and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Some understanding goes a long way

  1. Hi. Have you read any of Vincent’s letters? He wrote many of them, mostly to his brother Theo. He was an excellent, insightful writer.

    Neil Scheinin


  2. Beautiful shots of a moody Okanagan Lake. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Joni says:

    Last winter I watched the movie Loving Vincent – which was the first fully painted animated movie of it’s kind, and I found it fascinating. It deals with some of the mystery surrounding the gunshot wound which ended his life. At the end of the movie is a beautiful rendition of the Don McLean song (by a European/British singer) which I absolutely loved and downloaded to my playlist. I enjoyed the movie as it’s like watching a moving painting, and it made me want to read a biography about his life. Here’s a link to the movie if you are interested. I actually watched it twice as after I read a bit about the different theories re his death and then rewatched it –


  4. Don McLean is well remembered for “American Pie”, but I would debate with anyone that his best work is “Starry Starry Night”. It is a ballad that I believe will be played as long as Van Gogh’s work hangs on gallery walls. Thanks for the link, along with the blog. Your lake is beautiful.


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