Posts Tagged ‘family’

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My daughter Christy, the person on the right , played Mrs. Webb in the play Our Town. She has acted in many plays at the Pressor Arts center in Mexico Missouri. My wife and and I attended the Sunday afternoon performance.The woman on the left is playing Mrs. Gibbs.

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Christy in another scene during the performance. Photos are from the facebook page of the Pressor Performance Arts Center.

Below is a blog post by our friend Tim Carson who with his wife Kathy attended this performance.

Our Town is every town

by vitalwholeness

I was pleased to recently attend another presentation of the now classic stage play Our Town written by Thornton Wilder. As you know, the sparseness of this play makes it rich. And the running commentary by the Stage Manager actually interprets the normality of life in its bigger view. There are portions of the three act play that always bring me to tears, mostly in the closing act that pulls no punches in bringing the stark reality of mortality and eternity to the fore.

The Stage Manager warns us early on that however intrigued we might be with day-to-day life in Grover’s Corners and refrains of love and marriage, more somber themes are on the way. He wasn’t kidding. Up to the cemetery we go where the dead are “weaned away from the world” step by step.

The living can’t grasp the meaning of life until it’s gone and they sure can’t grasp eternity, not fully, though, as the Stage Manger says, “everybody in their bones knows that something is eternal.”

But it is Emily, dead too early, who captures the longing for life unobserved and missed when she looks back one last time. Her monologue is the nut of the play, and one sentence stands out more than any other:

“Good-by, Good-by, world. Good-by, Grover’s Corners. Mama and Papa. Good-bye to clocks ticking. and Mama’s sunflowers. And food and coffee. And new-ironed dresses and hot baths and sleeping and waking up. Oh, earth, you’re too wonderful for anybody to realize you. Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it? – every, every minute?

And we lean in and listen to the answer of the Stage Manager, our resident philosopher: “No. The saints and poets, maybe—they do some.”

After Emily returns and takes her place in the company of those who have crossed over, darkness falls over Grover’s Corners and the Stage Manager helps us, one more time, to see how the ordinary turns under the aspect of eternity. After noting the time, the way we finite creatures understand time, he speaks to us and says,  “Hm…Eleven o’clock in Grover’s Corners…You get a good rest, too. Good night.”

Do we get a good night’s rest? The saints and poets, maybe.

Is this an Easter story? Part of it? Or larger than it?

Think about that as you watch the close of Act 3 in the Lincoln Center production with actress Penelope Ann Miller.

Here is a segment from  the director’s note by  Dave Roland from the play program.
“It is a play about what it means to be human, what it means for ordinary, unexceptional people to have life and identity, and to contribute their own verse to ” the powerful play.” And in it’s own uniquely powerful way, it encourages the audience to be sure that they are contributing their own verse, they take some time to fully appreciate the small, beautiful wonders of life and our relationship to those with whom we share it.”

Cosmic Love

Cosmic Love painting by John Dyess

Reproductions of my painting “Cosmic Love” on tee shirts, framed prints, wall art, pillows ,greeting cards, phone cases, apparel and coffee mugs can be purchased on


Buy your Joy

A better Tomorrow

After all our shopping, and wrapping, and giving, let’s take time to think
about those  who are hungry and homeless.


“What’s the cost of living?”

This image contains a Polaroid photo from the 1960’s ,which I took as
reference for a commercial illustration assignment, a bar code from a
food can, newspaper advertisement and black enamel paint applied with a
For me the empty grocery cart, in this image I created, represents hunger and homelessness.

Dyess Family Christmas 1987 and 2018

This 1987 photo was the first of the “children posing on stairs” photographs taken at the Dyess family Christmas gatherings. Starting at the bottom stair is my daughter Audrey and going clockwise is my daughter Christy,  my nephew  David, my son Mark  my nephew Scott, my son Mike, my niece Debby

Dyess Family Christmas 2018

This Dyess Christmas gathering “family stairs photo” was taken Saturday December 22, 2018. Starting at the bottom left of the stairs is my grandson Dominic, my daughter Audrey’s son and going clockwise up the stairs is grandson Ryan, my son Mike’s son, my grandson Brady, Mark’s son, my grandson Mason, Mark’s son, my grandson Devon, Mike’s son, in the middle my granddaughter Delanie, Christy’s daughter, next to her my grand-daughter Claire, Christy’s daughter, and below her my grand-daughter Sophia, Audrey’s daughter.

Homeward Bound

This is my oil on canvas painting titled “Homeward Bound”.


This is my illustration that I call “Giving Thanks”.

Harvest Home

This is my illustration for “The Harvest Home” fictional story in the October 1996 issue of Mature Living magazine which is published by Lifeway Press. The art director was David Wilson.

A gift for Melanie

My illustration “A gift for Melanie” was published in the December 2001 issue of Mature Living magazine. The art director was David Wilson


Reproductions of my mixed media painting “A turkey in the woods” can be purchased on I hope you have a happy Thanksgiving!

Egyptian-Necklace (Carolyn) (2007)

“Egyptian Necklace” a portrait of Carolyn -oil on canvas (2007)

Carolyn World oil on canvas (1995)

” Carolyn’s World” oil on canvas (1995)

Audrey-in-at-10 (1991)

Audrey at 10 years old, oil on canvas (1991)

Audrey Only Gold can Stay

Audrey ” Only Gold can Stay ” ink on vellum (1993)

Audrey's Wedding day (2008)

Audrey’s wedding day. oil on canvas (2008)


Audrey unfinished portrait (1982)

Recently I have been taking an inventory of the visual art I have created during the last 60 plus years.  I will be posting images of many of my drawings, paintings , illustrations and photographs, with a brief description. This post displays paintings that I created of my  daughter Audrey at different ages.

Audrey age 3 (1984)

Audrey age 3 (1984)


Audrey sitting in a rocking chair at age 6. (1989)