I am sitting on the stained way off white carpet, poorly sized for this room, with a crease down the center all bunched up. My back against the wall (dark blue, covered in tack holes) staring at a miscellany of art projects from the years, the last four. The last four of them. The four years leading up to this moment, fleeting as it is. I’m already smiling from the future, analyzing this period of my human development with notepads and speculation. Yes, presently, I feel as though this transitional period of mine is some vague turning point, a graduation from my sun soaked days. I tried to contort myself into a smaller version of myself in order to fill the tiny slot they had for me. My presence demands less parameters. No perimeter fence around my nervous system. My girlfriend, at that time and now, always vanilla scented, shape shifting mind, and those sultry eyes, told me, “You’ve become a muted grey version of yourself.”
Truth. I folded up nicely into their tan lined palms to be thrown out with the other recyclables that have absentmindedly been tossed in the trash. A crumpled up piece of paper. Feeling like chewing on tinfoil. Open up a new landfill, you negligent bodies, mother earth needs more blemishes on her skin. More clogged pores and clots in her arteries. Garbage men are not magicians. Poof! Trash gone! No. None of that. But you will be rewarded, by your humble actions, oh brave many, with the eminent white blood cell rejection of your poisons when too many are pumped into her blood stream. Mother will not die but she will adapt and grow accordingly. Either a mutant version of our leftovers (recycled can islands that humans eventually transfer subsidized housing out onto) or a lethal retaliation; as in when she cries for help to the stars for another meteor to wipe out the pests like dinosaurs. Whatever prehistoric complaint she had with the dinosaurs is long buried by our human stupidity and procreation. (no other species kills members of other species to mount their heads on their study room walls). She has learned to hold her temper, keep her patience, or she is asleep. Boy would she be mad if she woke up!
I want to at least try to be bigger than narrow societal boxes. I have graduated from my cave of heat and now move north toward cold snowflake personalities washed in dark shades of purple from unknown, rainy day, bruises.
I see these canvases and drawings across the room. A collection of collages and rambling, searching artwork from years of delve-deep-into-the-self depression and purposeful removal of meaningful social contact. In those images, there is truth. There is evidence of tangential thinking. Here and here and here. (points at colorful ideas started then abruptly finished, each in an individual passion, until all the ideas form a full, somewhat chaotic, thought or feeling.)
One collage I’ve done featuring images from the disastrous Los Angeles earthquake in 1994. At first glance it is, indeed, a chaotic scene. Similar to what it must have felt like to be caught in the damn thing. It is assembled by many ‘vignettes’ or individual stories with characters and color harmony until the whole image acts as a complete piece.
I don’t know. Sometimes I’m on to something and then I dream up something different, which seems better because it is different and go there instead. Leaving that first design, that first fragment of an idea in the dust. Burning through ideas across a canvas like a time lapse image of a laboratory rat completing different tasks in a rectangular maze.
This is a transitional period because I suddenly realize that all of this effort, this meandering on paper, is soon to grow exponentially into a finer point. I will use words, music, and canvases to convey myself in the clearest language, melodies, and colors possible. Here is where all of the time spent writing to write to write, write, write, write– is fully realized as a solid foundation for future growth. The growth of a god damn mountain. Wow. Look at it rising like skyscrapers and creative whirlwinds of thought shut out all possible regret for my decisions.
I am lucky and happy.
I can hear my cadence rising to higher decibels, mountain tops. And also the echoing black void of my past cheering me on. All disappeared versions of myself are reattaching to my heart and we’re getting along just famously. All of those sad nights of pent up angst and emotions exhausted into creative endeavors…. are calling each other up and planning a mighty kegger in Seattle. In January. Next year. Be there. Bring a cup.