Wabi-sabi Rainbow

Wabi-sabi is the beauty of the imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. It is the beauty of things unconventional and modest.  It’s not just a style of art, it’s a world view.

“Wabi-sabi is a way of seeing the world that is at the heart of Japanese culture. It finds beauty and harmony in what is simple, imperfect, modest, natural, and mysterious. It can be a little dark, but it is also warm and comfortable. It may be best understood as a feeling, rather than as an idea.” – Mark Reibstein and Ed Young

Thanks Rarasaur for this excellent prompt for the promptless.

Imperfect, impermanent and incomplete describes so many things in my life, I found myself wandering around pointing them out to myself for such a long time that it got a bit ridiculous.  At last I have come to the conclusion that wabi-sabi is just an over all general description for everything we hold personally dear.  Might as well find and appreciate the beauty in our imperfect lives,  because imperfection is all any of us is likely ever going to get.   I suppose my cluttered mess of a house is a reflection of my scattered life, because it’s full of things I love, not for their perfection or their value (as potentially lucrative yard sale items)  but for the way they make me feel whenever I look at them.

omayjas rainbow 001

My granddaughter Omayja (pronounced by combining the meditation mantra Oohhmmm with the continent Asia) sat down at my kitchen table a few months ago and drew me a rainbow.  It has been on my fridge ever since.  It isn’t perfect as far as rainbow shapes and colors normally go, but to me it is a beautiful work of art.  Normally I clear my fridge of all the coloring and pictures after a couple of weeks of opening and closing the door and having various pieces fly off in the breeze and flutter to the floor.  That way there’s a clean slate for the next creative frenzie.

But this particular piece has survived a number of clean sweeps.  I can’t seem to take it down.  It gives me the most peaceful happy feeling whenever I look at it.  And now it has a name, as every great work of art should.  Omayjas Wabi-sabi Rainbow.

The next time she’s here I’ll ask her to sign it, and then I’m going to frame it and hang it up somewhere in the place of some perfectly aesthetically beautiful framed thing that pleases the eye but means nothing to my soul and has never touched my heart.

29 thoughts on “Wabi-sabi Rainbow

  1. Funny how your mind plays tricks on you. My first thought was that you were about to extol the virtues of Wasabi which is a Japanese horseradish and yummy on sushi. If I tear my mind away from food I can note that Wabi-sabi has less calories and is a lovely way to nourish your soul. How lovely. ps. No one’s life is perfect, finding a way to appreciate what you have is surely Wabi-sabi., gran, well thought out.

    I’ve been going through the picture on the fridge phase for 12 years now and can count on the latest batch of grandchildren to provide me with more in the next few years. Framing at least one picture is a great idea, gran. Wish I had thought of it myself, I just tossed them after a while. Can I suggest, though, that you also date your picture before framing it? Time goes by so quickly. (Is that a song?)


    • Isn’t it ‘time goes by so slowly….but only while you’re at work…’ lol Good idea about dating the art work. My sister kept a three drawer filing cabinet with a drawer for each of her kids creations. You never know what little thing might become a keepsake and a family treasure.


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  3. Isn’t it wonderful how young children see the essence of things? Like: a rainbow is a series of curves in different colors. Period. So simple. That’s why it’s beautiful. She doesn’t have the knowledge yet to know what order the colors are “supposed” to be in. Just different colored curves.


    • Yes, it’s the simplicity that makes it so appealing, and knowing there was certainly no compass involved in its free hand construction. It’s just a natural interpretation, through a childs eyes.


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  9. As I was reading I was thinking you must frame it. I have a picture that Charlotte did of her big sister Rebekah when she was in nursery school. If I hadn’t framed it, it would have disintegrated by now!!

    I must remember to take a photo & post it on here, it is superb 🙂


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