the dream recurs throughout my life. the dark figure i can only see out of the corner of my eye. his presence is ominous. only in dreams is his presence known. dreams of empty rooms, caverns underground. i can’t see him, but i can feel his presence. i want to wrestle him. like jacob wrestled the angel. but i can’t. always out of my reach. but always there. holding my leash in his hands. haunted rooms resonate with his inaudible sound. a sound that i can’t escape.
I was just thinking of that sociopath friend I had when I was 12. I can’t count the number of criminal offenses that I was an accessory to. Something was WEIRD about his family. They were Nazarenes. The kind of church where the women wear skirts that stretch down to their ankles.
He taught me about how easy it is to be manipulated. For some reason it all made sense. Him smashing in the windshield of a van with a baseball bat. just because. I sat at the side and didn’t think anything of it. I wasn’t interested in doing it myself, but somehow it made sense to me that he was. Forging checks. Lookout while he broke into a house and stole a bunch of tapes. He had some far flung excuse for it… but deep down, I knew the score. It seemed peculiar to me that he would have a Crystal Gayle tape in his collection.
It’s strange how some people have that kind of effect. It was like I was in some sort of dream. And then the shit hit the fan and suddenly it was very real. Fortunately I escaped unscathed. My parents had no idea how close I’d come to juvie. It was then that I realized who my real friends were.
Which reminds me, my neighborhood friends knew me as “Mark”. I have a tendency to mumble and when I was asked what my name was, they thought I said “Mark”. So I became Mark. For some reason, it seemed sensible to be called that, so I let that become my name. Thus began my fascination with being known by many names.
ok. so i’m going to blather on about painting again. :)
it has become extremely important to me in recent years and it has occurred to me why. the point isn’t about being great. i’m not satisfied with anything i’ve ever done. ever. it may not be good, but it’s me in a very real sense. struggling with my issues and limitations. i feel so disappointed sometimes.
i could never accept positive things that happened to me. i used to retreat into fantasy to escape what i believed to be an ugly, loveless world. this isn’t true, of course, it was just my mindset. there is ugliness, but there is also beauty. often in unexpected places.
i don’t know when or why this attitude developed, but i’ve been this way as far back as i can recall. and that’s where fantasy comes in. i could always escape to my daydreams. as i got older, though, the dreams were no longer adequate for me to cope with my feelings. it caused a great deal of distress. like waking up in a tank to find the water is rising above your neck. no escape. trapped.
so initially, i painted to express these feelings. i still do, but i think i see in it something else now. whether it is good or bad, ugly or beautiful… it is me. all of it. it’s disturbing for me to look at my paintings sometimes. like my walls are covered with demons. but there is a reckoning there. and it is real. no fantasy. and i have to deal with its consequences.
- Quentin Tarantino.
(reblogged from jolienoire)
yep. All I have to say is “Holy Mountain” visually stunning in a way that no computer could ever emulate.
The dream is vaporous
a foolish paradise eroded
needles push through skin
the pain is true reality.
no expression for dead-end avenues
box car lined with ghosts
they dance and sing songs of love
our hearts are only faith.
i feel so devalued now. perhaps i had an inflated view of my own self-worth.
Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field. I will meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about
language, ideas, even the phrase each other
doesn’t make any sense.
i think the closest thing that i have to a religious experience is making abstract art. i don’t really have anything else. i have no faith or belief in anything. part of it bothers me. the lack of control, the giving of yourself to chance. it doesn’t seem legitimate. but there’s those moments when the magic happens… like an apparition of some sort presents itself. i imagine it is much like the divining that ancient peoples practiced. like casting an i ching. you cast those sticks with your own hands. chance is involved but you also are chance. that’s the mystic in me. the part of me which loves looking at walls. the detritus. the decay. the whole allegory of the human condition is there. intention struggling in vain to overcome the indifference of the natural order.
i just remembered the first pornographic drawing i did. I was 12? i think so. it was of lesbians, which fascinated me at the time. i wish i still had it, but i threw it away long ago.
i’m not really sure how it happened, but somewhere along the way i started to hate tv. i don’t know what it is about it that revolts me. when i watch it, i feel as though i’m in a shopping mall. when i watch one of those shows, it depresses me.
i grew up in suburban america for the most part and, when i did, i always felt uneasy about it. nothing but subdivisions and shopping malls. at least there was a field nearby where we could play and use our imaginations. everything else was just preoccupied with passive consumption. bland, trashy, and designed exclusively to cater to the consumer impulse.
i don’t necessarily think that this is some conspiracy, although in a way it is. most things are that involve groups of people. that is the definition of conspiracy. more accurately, it represents a collective mindset that has been nurtured by popular culture for decades. over time, i’ve become more aware of it. it’s often not intended to be devious because it represents the cultural context which so many believe to be real.
there always has been consumption, and there always will be. i just don’t identify with the established view. this makes me alienated, and probably a little hostile.
there is, of course, more to the story of the individual american that this. to ignore that would be to stereotype. this projection represents a bell curve that seeks to take a diverse mass and generalize them to the point of stupidity. a collective reality which does not exist.
it’s clear to me now that i’m reinforcing my own values. feeding an endless loop. this may be obvious to others, but it’s difficult to recognize when you’ve built your world around the loop. the loop becomes like water is to a fish. like air to a bird. you start to believe that there is nothing beyond it. that it actually is the world in an objective sense.
sartre. when i read “the age of reason” and “nausea” i was already feeling very jaded. very hopeless. in “the age of reason”, the protagonist is faced with the dilemma of free will and makes a decision that is detrimental to his happiness. he refuses to accept that his life is already a circumstance that is very real and that these circumstances make him who he is. he makes the wrong decision as a result.
ultimately, he is free. but he is also free to ruin his life. i took this to mean, using my classic negative thinking, that life is indeterminate and we’re slaves to circumstance. there is my pattern. my loop. but that’s not what he meant. he was warning the reader against living an unengaged life.
anyhoo… there’s a song by the kinks called “wonder boy”. it goes like this:
Everybody is looking for the sun.
People strain their eyes to see,
But I see you and you see me,
And aint that wonder?
that about sums it up.