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Twelve Signs of the Zodiac: Libra – Appreciation

Studio Libra 1 by Anne Ierardi

Musing on the sign of Libra I see the scales of justice, striving for balance and fairness. I hear Stevie Wonder’s song “All in Love is Fair.” Libra desires fairness in all things but love too? 

John Lennon, a very famous Libran implored us to “give peace a chance.”  

Studio Libra 2 by Anne Ierardi



Yet, the word that most connects me to Libran energy is “appreciation.”

Appreciation is a kind of gratitude expressed in painting or music, literature or  just Life at its fullest.

Eugene O’Neil – October 16, 1888

“Man is born broken. He lives by mending. The grace of God is glue.”

Eugene O’Neill quotes the poet Baudelaire in his moving autobiographical play, “Long Day’s Journey into Night. One day I spotted a news clipping of Brian Dennehy and Vanessa Redgrave staring in the play. It inspired this painting:

Long Days Journey into Night, Anne Ierardi


Be always drunken.
Nothing else matters: that is the only question.
If you would not feel
the horrible burden of Time
weighing on your shoulders
and crushing you to the earth,
be drunken continually.

Drunken with what?
With wine, with poetry, or with virtue, as you will.
But be drunken.

As it turns out Baudelaire was born under the passionate sign of Aries, opposite to the sign of Libra. I suspect his advice didn’t do any good for O’Neil.


Appreciation of a Woman’s Dream

Betty Ann in front of her Earthship home, off the grid

About ten years ago Judy and I spent a magical day in Taos, New Mexico.  We were in Santa Fe for a  conference “Creativity and Madness”  a dialogue between the arts and psychology.

A ministry colleague of mine, Rev. Betty Ann Lehmann, had relocated to Taos so I decided to get in touch.

Inside her green house
Inside her green house.




A Dream House, Anne Ierardi
Taos Mountain, Anne Ierardi

Betty Ann introduced us to the Harwood Museum of Art where she was a docent. There Betty Ann, beaming with quiet pride, ushered us into a room  of what appeared to be minimalist’s canvases mostly in white. What was amazing is the profound spiritual quality of Agnes Martin’s work. 

I learned recently that Betty Ann died in 2019. We met in the early nineties when I moved to Cape Cod. There were very few woman clergy at that time. She was an associate pastor at the Federated Church of Hyannis. She truly exhibited the positive qualities of Libra: loving, creative, and appreciative.

Giuseppe Verdi  – October 10, 1813

Verdi, drawing    Anne Ierardi

In the city of Parma they celebrate the artistry of Verdi with a festival. In 2018 we took a tour with “Artful Journeys” during the last day of the festivities. A group assembled under the balcony hoping we might get a glimpse of the singers to appear outside the opera house. Imagine the thrill when they came out and sang, “Libiamo ne’ lieti calici.”  “Let’s drink from the joyous chalices where beauty blossoms!”

Listen to this rendition by Pavarotti (b.  October 12, 1935) and Nuccia Focile.


  • Charlotte Galper

    What an entertaining blog Anne! The inviting writing, your wonderful paintings, and you even provide us with song. Lovely way to start the morning-Thank you!

  • Jean Jensen

    Agree whole heartedly with Charlotte! A good way to end my day! Thank you so much! Blessings to you and Judy!

  • Peg Schultz-Akerson

    Dear Anne, what a refreshment to savor your richly fashioned blog of poetry, paintings, lives caring for earth, loves lived well, hearts wide open, goodness going deep. It’s always such a pleasure and inspiration and cause for rejoicing. Thank you for being artistic you! News here is we’ve welcomed grandbaby #4! Such joy! Fondly, Peg

  • Liz (Betsy) Miller

    What joy to read your post and see your beautiful paintings! The years have rolled by, and I am grateful that the internet brings you back into my life if even for a few moments. I continue to learn from you. Peace!

  • Jane O’Hara Shields

    As a Libran, I write with appreciation! Thank you, Anne, for this blog with its contributions of art in many and various forms. A nice touch to listen to the music. I don’t remember Betty Ann and yet, through you, I feel like I knew her. Praise God for her life and ministry.

  • jeanette baldassarri

    Thanks for your always interesting blog. An inspiring collection of Libras who have touched your life. I love looking at your painting. They are really beautiful.

  • David Rogers

    Dear Anne… LONG overdue ?I so enjoy your blog and your heart..keep them coming…ALWAYS ! ❤️ Dave