Monday, November 16, 2009

look into the abyss

and the abyss will look back at you!

that's one of my favorite sayings from nietzsche. what does it mean? who knows? guess you have to experience it to understand it.

a couple years ago i read an article by hugh macleod and now he has a book you can pretty much get the gist from this web-page. i've been browsing the book at barnes & noble.

and what strikes me most is how doing some kind of odd artwork can lead you out into the world, but 'successful beware.' and i especially like 'Dying young is overrated.' true, i have wandered in and out of keats' house on hamstead heath and the room where he died by the spanish steps. gazed up at the blue house in oaxaca where d.h. lawrence wrote 'mornings in mexico.' the fanatic, as he lay dying his wife had to grab the pen out of his hand.

this reminds me of my world-traveler companion, berta gardner. she would never part with her pack anywhere. the damn thing must have weighed sixty pounds. as she lay dying in the hospital, her sister finally convinced her to let her take the pack out of the room. and that was the end.

the moral from macleod: "You are responsible for your own experience.' if you tempt the abyss, have your passion and the proper tools to deal with it. and "Nobody cares. Do it for yourself."

have you ever sat in class or in the theater, looked around you and thought, 'none of these people will be here in a hundred years?" i have, and maybe that's the abyss. the artist francis bacon thought of himself as a snail crawling across the canvas and leaving slime. hmm, being francis bacon he may not have been being hard on himself after all.

hugh maintains if you've got the creative urge you're stuck with it. compassion, not pity, my friends. if you've seen ben allen's performance of 'johnny got his gun' at the blue room, you know what i mean.

new photos: