By Phyllis Kennemer
Worrell is a wandering man, a wandering soul. He came from the desert; he returns again and again to the desert; the desert gives him life. And what a life he has lived in his 78 years so far! At the present time Worrell is an artist, an author, a poet and a musician. He lives mostly in Mason, Texas, where he creates sculptures, paintings, poems, songs and books. He has an art gallery named after him in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where he also maintains a casita (a little adobe house).
Worrell’s art career was born in 1979. He and a friend were exploring in the Chihuahua Desert area near the Pecos River when a violent thunderstorm developed and they took refuge in a nearby cave. Worrell became entranced with the ancient pictorial art and cultural debris inside the cave. He was moved to create art of his own based on these findings. His sculptures, made mostly of stone and brass, are inspired by ancient drawings and symbols. Spirals and crosses appear in his signature art pieces.
Worrell has recorded his thoughts and insights in journals for over thirty years, sometimes in prose and other times in poetry. His large format books, Voices from the Caves: The Shamans Speak, published in 1996, and Journeys Through the Winds of Time, published in 2000, are artistic treasures. They feature gorgeous photographs of some of his sculptures and paintings accompanied by journal entries describing the inspiration for their creation.
His latest book, Places of Mystery, Power and Energy, is more autobiographical with an engaging conversational tone. In it he reminisces about childhood experiences and early jobs, but mostly shares his abiding interest in and talent for art.
Worrell, a deeply spiritual man, is sensitive to the energy around him. He believes that energy is infinite and that greater energy can be found in some places more than in others. He differentiates between physical energy and psychic energy. Just as some places have more wind (physical) energy than others, some places have more psychic (spiritual) energy. He has experienced strong psychic energies in Texas, New Mexico and Arizona.
He has personally seen the Marfa Lights and the Lubbock Lights in Texas. He marvels at the unknown power and energy they emit. Although he acknowledges the UFO interest they’ve garnered, he is more interested in the energy being emitted than its origin.
Worrell spends some time each year in Santa Fe, partly because he enjoys the energy he feels there. He believes that Sedona, Arizona, is a magical place. He explains that how people sense and respond to psychic energies varies from one person to the next. When it comes to the controversy about the Sedona vortexes, he concludes that it all depends on the individual. Some people feel special energy in these places and others do not. Either way is okay. Feeling or not feeling a particular energy is not a measure of a person’s spirituality, he insists.
Worrell has always been an artist, but his dream of making a living with his talent was a long time coming. He moved from his little town in Texas to Fort Collins in 1954 to study forestry at CSU, but left during his freshman year. After leaving Fort Collins, he held a variety of jobs, including a position as a District Scout Executive, the pastor for a small church in rural Texas, and a life insurance salesman. In 1960 he entered Texas Tech University in Lubbock where he went on to earn a Masters Degree in Fine Art. In 1970 he went to the University of Texas in Odessa on a doctoral scholarship.
Then he decided to take a risk. He had a discussion with a friend about the ingredients of success. They came to the conclusion that success depends on innate intelligence, hard work, and taking a reasonable risk that is cautious, carefully calculated and non-capricious. He set up his art studio in Mason, Texas, near the Llano River about one hundred miles south of San Antonio. He now devotes himself to writing and creating artistic pieces.
Worrell relates that 1982 was a year of transformation for him. He decided it was time to get rid of all the negatives in his life, so he created a Garden of Thorns in an area behind his studio. The garden resembles a cemetery with crosses made of white concrete representing monuments to the garbage he has dumped. Some of the labels include Shame, Faults, Blame, Bad Habits, Hate and a Bad Right Knee.
Worrell’s talents extend from art and writing into musical composition and expression. He has produced a CD featuring fifteen songs. His personal messages annotating the lyrics in the accompanying booklet provide insight for most of them. Next to the first selection, “Out in New Mexico,” he notes that he is hopelessly in love with New Mexico and always has been. Other notations mention specific people, including his parents. The last song is also the title of the CD, “Carpe Every Diem” – enjoy the present; live in the moment; don’t worry about the future.
Worrell extends a message to young people. “Believe in yourself and your own talent. Life can be brutal; college professors can be cruel; talent can be disabused. You are the best judge of what you want to do and create. Stay true to your dreams.”
BILL WORRELL POEMS
MYSTERY, POWER, & ENERGY
There are places of Great Mystery
Some of these are good
Some are not good
Watch closely every step taken
So that Mysteries edify you
Subsidize your faith
And not confound you
That the Power surrounding you
Be that goodness of the Great Spirit
And that the Energy be boundless
And filled with Great Peace
Worrell, 05/26/10 – 11:47 a. m., Southland, Texas, returning from Santa Fe after wonderful visits with wonderful people: Kix, Ronnie, Jessie, Nick, and some girls from Austin.
We tune the strings,
Tighten the reeds,
Adjust the slides.
Even the drums we tune,
So there will be Harmony.
For that we have no tolerance.
We demand harmony, euphony.
The one who sings out of key is admonished.
Even with art we demand harmony.
We demand rhythm, line, color, form, shape, proportion, texture, and value.
With all of these we demand harmony.
We perceive the balance of Nature
And consider it Harmony. We marvel at astronomy,
At the rhythm and Harmony of the Universe.
Are we the only creatures that demand Harmony,
Yet live in discord?
The shaman teaches:
Let your lives flow with the seasons.
Tune your hearts and minds to be considerate of others.
Be considerate of your self.
Be considerate of all creatures.
Be considerate with the Earth.
Let your beings be in Harmony with all Nature.
Let there be Harmony in all things.
Worrell – 05/02/11 – 12:04 p. m. – New Art, Texas
A MESSAGE FOR PEACE
The people gather together
The People laugh, Children play
The People tell stories, recite legends
They sing songs, dance
The People love, rejoice
They are happy
The Earth is happy
Creatures are happy
The People gather in Great Peace, Great Fellowship
The Shaman tells them:
“Everywhere over entire Earth
People could be
Rejoicing and making Great Peace…
Instead of making war.”
Worrell, 01/28/11 – 9:13 a. m., New Art, Texas
Worrell, 01/28/11 – 9:13 a. m., New Art, Texas