Paintings, Poems, Quotes, and Haiku's are all original works from Doyle Arts
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Sunday, October 3, 2010

Crossing the Bridge

Theme:   Simplify

To order this print, click on the link below:


"Biking in the Boondocks"

Dodging crickets, dodging frogs,
Protect your legs from nipping dogs.
Startled horses, flattened snakes
Fresh black tar, and body aches.

Dodging puddles, dodging worms.
Dangerous gravel on corner turns.
Bugs in eyes, bugs on teeth,
Up hill climbs, potholes beneath.

Dodging joggers, dodging storms,
Roadside litter, buzzing swarms.
Red Winged Blackbirds, baby hares,
Rusty nails, and Wooly Bears.

Chains fall off, sweat in eyes,
Fatigue sets in, burning thighs.
Country bike rides I must say,
"Whose idea was this anyway?"

- Richard Doyle -


"Sample the Wine"

Before the grapes
dry on the vine,
take the time
to sample the wine.



If in solitude
one befriends them self, truly they
are never alone.

To order this print, click on the link below:


The sun had just made it's way over the trees.  The sounds of solitary voices echoed off the Ashtabula River valley that wound it's way through the rural village of Kelloggsville in Ashtabula County, Ohio.  An occasional pause in the conversation gave way to the sounds of Amish buggies as they made their way over the gravel road, and through the 150 year-old covered bridge.  What an unmistakable sound amid the aroma of Autumn leaves, and a fire pit that would warm us for the day.

Shortly before noon the air would be filled with laughter, conversations, and Christian hymns, the likes to which you'd only hear on a static-filled AM radio station in the heart of Appalachia.  Powerful words sung in a language that I think us city folks refer to as "twang".  I would be "subjected" to this until noon.  After all, this WAS Sunday, as I was told.  I'd have it no other way.  The crowds would pick up after church let out.  And pick up they did.

I created a collage painting of all 18 of the covered bridges of Ashtabula County.  I sold my collages during this annual Covered Bridge Festival, for which half of the proceeds went to restore the town's only landmark, the Root Road Covered Bridge.  A town whose only other landmark was a singular stop sign at the town's crossroads.  Me in my jeans and a flannel shirt, that had replaced my khaki's and button down shirt from the previous day.  I clearly did not know my audience that first day. 

I spent the day in the company of my new found friends.  People of small monetary wealth, or so I assumed.  I'd have no way of knowing, nor would they ever let on otherwise.  Humble people who enjoyed the simplicity of their quiet lives.  Hot dogs over the fire pit, home made pies sold by the slice, shoe box full of cash, laughter throughout the day, and the thrill that this good hearted stranger would join them to help their cause.  We met people from all over as thousands visited our impromptu roadside festival.  You could tell the visitors were engulfed in the simplicity as well. 

I raised $250 for their cause that day, and together the group raised over $3,000.  In the end, however, they truly raised more than that: they raised my spirits.  Almost to a person they'd offer to me, "Come back next year, and bring your family."  "You can stay with us, so bring the whole gang." "I hope your kids aren't as ornery as you."  I promised I'd be back.

I received an invitation in the mail the other day.  It read "Puttin' on the Ritz", a $150 a plate, black tie charity auction in my hometown.  A worthy cause, no doubt, but I think I'll leave that for the others in my community.  I use to attend all of those types of events, and usually not so much for the cause, but mainly to "be seen".  Thankfully I've progressed beyond that, and now my time is focused on only the causes I truly embrace.

In the complicated world of computers, text messaging, and internet games, it is refreshing to escape to a world of simplicity.  I encourage everyone to simplify, and give of your time, wealth, and talents.  I've learned that there are few feelings better than that of giving to others, or when you share your talents.  So share away, and make your way towards:
Crossing the Bridge to Simplicity



  1. Your blog is beautiful!!

  2. Nice! Where can I get one?

  3. Thank you for asking. I've had others ask, so now there is a link below each of the paintings that takes you to my website where you can make a purchase.

  4. That dragonfly is breathtaking !! How special, and the poem is beautiful! What a true friend she must be! Bridge looks awesome!

  5. I found this blog from a link on another blog, how nice this is!! Going to check out your site!

  6. We should all be so lucky to have a "true friend"! Beautiful poems-they all strike a chord. That one is truly wonderful.

  7. Thank You for joining us at the Ashtabula County Covered Bridge weekend. We loved your Bridge paintings-prints. You would honor us to come again.
    Root Road Covered Bridge is the best, good time,good food, and happy volunteers! Kelloggsville Historian Ginni

  8. Too my new found friends in Kelloggsville near the Root Road Bridge...I HAD A BLAST! We were able to raise $250 from the sale of the prints to help their organization, in addition to the amount of money the organization raised from all of their hard work. The BEST bridge to visit of the 18 on the tour. I'll be back! (P.S. I hope you enjoy the surprise I left behind for the committee volunteers...ENJOY!)