Jack Balas, 2022;
India ink, watercolor, gouache & acrylic on paper, 22x30 inches.


For some years now I've gotten in the habit, when I'm walking by a tree, to reach out and rub the bark or up to some leaves or a branch. A brief touch. Don't ask me why. I joke that it's to keep the trees on their toes. Maybe they perk up when they see me coming.
But I just heard yesterday my cousin Steve was in the hospital, cancer, younger than me by years, and this morning he's gone. It's a gorgeous day, winter in Tucson, sun, blue skies, 60's. I am in the park. Here is a tree. I reach up toward some branch. It's all connected. I swear it's all. Connected.

For Steve Balas
June 13, 1962-February 22, 2022