Who in god's name knows where these things come from, I swear, I can take responsibility but...not completely.
I am having a vision of Micah in her meat space with two chairs facing. When she sits in one she has to wear one of those unpardonable red clown noses. When she sits in the other she must explore the word "SHOULD.'
the rest is her dance, entirely and completely.
More on this to come.
See the Sufi notion of "The Path of Blame."
There are always circumstances. You can count on that. What you cannot count on is your own response to those circumstances. It could go any which way, really.
Meat Space #1 is an oasis of chocolate earth and damp green canopy in the middle of a busy boulevard. it would be easy, too easy, for me to think I can't be myself, standing there, exposed. Easy to think I can't breathe in there, expose my quietly humming insides to that circumstantial whoosh and whirr. But then... it's ordinary. I have to do it every day. And I'm not special in this; you do too. You do it probably so well you don't even notice you're doing it.
'in medias res.' Aristotle. Theatre. I remember from freshman year of high school. We enter the drama smack in the middle of things, not with some preamble. When the play starts, it's already going. That's how the quiet is in the middle of meat space #1. It doesn't begin just because I've arrived; it was already going.
Who started it? I look around, seemingly alone.
But above me is the green, humid, layer-cake-thick canopy magnolia and tulip have generated from their own blood, sweat and tears or the tree versions thereof; and below me is that chocolate earth, a criss-cross of ant traffic and petal smash. Who in me thought I was alone here goes quiet to reveal who in me knows I wasn't.
Here's another thing. When I step out, I become so superior to my own experience. I look at it from the outside; I see it shrink, feel it drop into my pocket, feel it jangle with me to my car where I will take diminutive notes, like an anthropoligist after the field closes behind her. But looking back at those notes, I am wiser than that trick of the academic. I remain lost in the middle of things, and I find myself accompanied by the quiet I walked away from but which hasn't walked away from me.
While waiting for my to-go order last week, I picked up a copy of Number : Inc, issue number 81. I was flipping through rather nonchalantly, until I saw these three words... Into the Ether. Whoa. It is like, in the movies, when a character arrives a certain place, not necessarily a physical one, and then a reel of ALL the moments that happened before in order for the character to arrive HERE NOW, come cascading like water. At that moment, I came to the realization of how comfortable I have become living in the ether. Things are softer there. There are a lot of grey areas. You can easily avoid the uncomfortable, just kind of float in the in-between space. This process of Meat Space Diaries has been, at times, like a hard slap across the face. A push, sometimes even a shove, out of the grey and into Technicolor.
I'm trying to make repeatable material from the deep state of improvisation. I'm not sure I will succeed, but Sally Markell spent time with me yesterday showing me the ropes. At my age, to think that I've never had someone so lovingly nudge me, from within that mad and lush state of improvisation, towards keeping material, making it revisitable. I feel like a kid again!
but like I said... I still don't know if I'll succeed at this...
Oh beauteous one, I got distracted.
.. no, that's not true...
Oh my darlin, I don't know where I've been.
...no, that's not true neither...
Wishing. Yearning. Burning myself up, out, through.
.. closer, yes, warmer now...
I thought I could reproduce you inside myself. I went and turned myself inside out looking for your
kind of quiet, your sort of gloom, your brand of excellent shut-up-and-be-still, it didn't
happen not yet. and now I have to
earn and burn my way back to you meanwhile you're throwing
down your blooms and cranking out unseen greens from the dark of your veins haphazard and generous well
go ahead. I am not there to catch you or stop you, I glide by incognito many times a day and trust me
you look good. you look all ways of good. I tremble out of the corners of my eyes and feel the weight of my unworth, and you are to blame, you triangular portion of this mighty dirtball called home.
I will catch up with you. It won't be the same, it won't be as if no time as passed, it won't
be as if at all. It will just be.
Meanwhile trust me with myself, seeking you inside, to fail longingly yours, belongingly yours, your unconditional support is not like anything else.
thank you for checking after me darlin meat space #1 so-called.
till soon, I remain.
Where did you go?
meat space #1, so-called
My son Grayson LOVES to build enclosures. On a recent trip to Target, using the money from his piggy-bank, he purchased a Humpback Whale. When we arrived home, he immediately went to work building an enclosure for this new addition to our family. Using wooden blocks that my husband played with as a child and a set of Yoga Toes, he built a lovely enclosure for his Humpback Whale. Upon finishing, he asked me these three questions...
1) What are we?
2) Who are we anyway?
3) Are we deep sea creatures?
I asked him what we "share" with the Humpback Whale. He told me we share the ocean, our confidence, our food, our Easter Eggs (we had just finished decorating eggs for Easter), and our Krill. I also asked him why he liked to make enclosures for his animals? Wouldn't they be happier in their natural habitats? He expressed to me how dangerous it is out "there" and that his enclosures keep his animal friends safe.
"If you love something, set it free. If it comes back, it was, and always be yours. If it never returns, it was never yours to begin with."
I would like to beg an exception to the buddhist concept that craving leads invariably to suffering.
This isn't always true; or at least, it's too vague.
Craving for craving's sake can be most.... satisfying.
For example, in these three vignettes we are working up for the Cooper Young Night Out on May 1, there is a craving in play which leads in three very different instances to an encounter that would be much less authentic without, well... the lack, the longing, the negative space... the craving that leads up to the encounter.
In our case, the notion of 'meat and potatoes' is getting fleshed out, pardon the pun.
You may crave meat and potatoes on occasion; but have you ever considered that you yourself are meaty? and as a vegetarian, golly gee i sure find myself craving potatoes an awful lot these days. Last week alone I had some every single day. Could it be that it's meat itself which craves its bland and beauteous opposite, the humble potato? And if so... is there anything not enlightened about that?
As a creative being, you are a builder of worlds. What kind of world do you want to build? Eric Maisel asked my creativity coaching group this question this week, and you could answer it too if you want.
I listened to Annie Lennox in a PBS broadcast per chance tonight while on a break from planting seeds in my parents’ garden. She was recorded in a live concert doing her most recent album of covers, and she ended with two of her older pieces.
why am I mentioning this? because it just so happened that I needed a piece of myself I had almost forgotten to come wailing up at me from the tangled corridor of my life, wearing Annie’s face and screeching with angelic ardor not my own but not not my own at the same time. And the words she was singing--no the word she was refraining from singing-- was why. She didn’t have to sing it. We knew it. We could hear it inside ourselves. And I wasn’t the only one brought to tears; wet tears, the kind you don’t try to hide. The kind that are rekindling world-building desire.
The world I want to build as an artist is so much like the one we already live in you almost cannot tell the difference except that it’s also the opposite, a bit like the chapel you can make with your hands then flip and see the people inside, all the fingers wagging. Fingers people, knuckles chapel, same thing, different. This question is such an excellent question it hurts to maintain it and it hurts to try to answer it. For now, I will leave it at this: I don’t know. I learn by going, I learn by doing, and I never know who is knocking on my door, only that I want them in with such ferocity, I have to set a timer to cool down, change clothes and persona to become the one they are waiting for, become overcome with sudden inexplicable dread, look out the window, watch them leaving, then grow the kind of wings that will let me catch them before it’s too late and before I have a chance to recompose my face.
Another go at answering, in a no-brainer fashion.
I want a wetter world. i want to lubricate the world so that the joins mesh and wiggle. In particular the join between body mind needs lube and I want people to play with how they partner these macrocosms. I want to build the kind of world where surprise is expected and people often provide them for themselves. I want to build a world made of unicorn hoofs--not separated from the unicorns!! unicorns must be live, fiesty, willful, and true! I want to build a world made of home made bread too hot to handle crafted from the softest, fleshiest childhood dreams, cultivated daily since birth in the sourdough method: take out and feed in in a continuous chain of culture, exchange of new oxygens with motherboard subconscious selected fantasia. To eat well from that, by your own hands. I want to build a world cram full of powerful, not empowered, people of every kind of face, body, style, smell, and sashay. Powerful people, loving powerful animals and forces of nature unbridled. Powerful people! People so full of themselves and so receptive to one another that we can be still. we can listen. we can watch. we can do nothing. we can sit down and grow next to a tree or build a world--but not because it would improve the world--no. but because we feel called by the lust of life to do so. I want to build a world where our vulnerability is exposed and we are invited to challenge each other and challenge expectations. A world where we can actually appreciate how fucking ridiculously cool it is to be alive, to have a sack of skin holding us in, to have the kind of casseroles that live inside our noggins crammed with exquisitely unique experiences and materia and dinosaur teeth and scum and folded grandmother lace and nails and literature and hormones. I want to lay bare the poetry of being. that’s the world I want to show; I’m not sure it needs building but revealing--craftily.
I want to speak to the god in people, because it is the god in people which dances.