where are you going, Merriwether Lewis?
Stayed up all night last night. Walked around neighborhood 5:30–6:20 AM, then went to bed for a few hours’ sleep. My brain has felt sluggish all day; my overall energy is fading. I’ve been so good about the daily posts, though, that I want to try writing something.
Talked about Persephone, Demeter, and Mrs. Nocerino [my mother’s introject, that I “inherited” from her] today.
Apparently there’s a hidden reason I didn’t do my “long weekend of writing” anytime in the past year: I’ve feared that I might descend into dangerous duende territory, and then not be able to return safely.
Why did I think of Albuquerque just now? The real city, or the place in my dream? Not sure.
My inner alligator is agitated.
I discovered/unearthed my Life’s Purpose. It’s . . . to be myself.
Might sound easy and simple, but historically, it’s been the hardest thing in the world. No one still alive (except for Spouse) wants me to be myself. Most of the people who have definite ideas about the subject apparently want me to be the exact opposite of myself. They certainly want me to excise all my favorite parts of myself, so I can be as dull and ordinary as they are.
Hasn’t worked. Mostly. Because I am still afraid of all sorts of things that shouldn’t be terrifying:
- What could I accomplish if I really tried as hard as I could?
- Conversely, what magical things . . . come naturally? What do I do as easily as breathing, that other people don’t (or can’t)?
- How and where can I apply my strengths to do good things in the world?
- Which genders are part of me? To what degree? How do they get along inside of me?
- If I wasn’t trying way too hard to chase after people who are indifferent to me, would anyone (besides Spouse) actually like me for myself? Would anyone seek me out?
- If I really am as weird as I think I am, deep down, can I find the courage to show that person to the world? Can I love that person?
It’s been 7 years since I decided to make my own art-making my top priority. What a long strange trip it’s been. It seemed like such a tiny thing at the time, but oh, it’s been rippling outward ever since.
I uploaded the photos from my flowers-and-me session a few days ago. Many of the shots are disturbing to look at — which caught me by surprise, as they weren’t disturbing to set up. They’re unsettling. They’re ambiguous.
Spouse’s best photographs often include those sorts of qualities, but I’ve never before reached that level of . . . skill? ideas? engagement?
I’m both seen and unseen in the photos, which is a sacred liminality for me in general, but especially (metaphysically) relevant during Scorpio.
= = *
I’m realizing I have very definite ideas about things I don’t want to do, some of which are de rigeur for everyone else who’s trying to make a name for themselves. So what will I do “instead”? I have no idea.
That seems like an exceptionally fertile void. I must resist trying to fill it.
+ * =
I asked Spouse to take a “good head shot” of me, that I was planning to use on LinkedIn, replacing the photo he took of me last year.
But 2 days ago, I was fooling around outside with autumn leaves, flowers, and selfies with 2 cameras, and I took a self-portrait that I’ve used for LinkedIn. It’s not a “serious” head shot; the flowers take up more space than my face does. I have a goofy grin. But . . . it suits me.
My profile isn’t like anyone else’s either. (I’ve looked and looked for someone else doing something similar. Haven’t found anything.)
I don’t have impressive credentials. And I probably never will. My work history is all over the place. I don’t know what I want to do “next”; I’m unsure of how to categorize what I’ve been doing, for the last 7 years. Exploring. Learning. Experimenting & iterating. Deeply engaging with the (mostly) nonhuman world, and my inner worlds. Failing, a lot. Trying more stuff.
* * %
Supposedly, most people can be “estimated”, if you “average” their 5 closest friends. For me, that would be Spouse (human), Uncle Boulder (a boulder), any of several specific trees, the Gunpowder River (a river), and probably a large orb-weaving spider. I’m gonna guess that my “social network” doesn’t match most people’s. How can you “average” any of those organisms anyway?
If I enlarge my “social network”, there’s just way more nonhumans in it. More trees, fungi, rocks, earthworms, slugs, bats, foxes, butterflies, flowers, bumblebees, etc., etc.
I would almost include books before I would include human beings. A great many human writers have influenced me/my worldview, but I don’t know any of them in person. (I’ve written to a few; they’ve not responded.)
I don’t know where I’m going with this. I don’t know anything anymore. I can feel the streams of my art forms crisscrossing each other, but I guess I’ll be as surprised as anyone to find out what they’ll be.
Poetry + Painting + Weaving + Photography + “Sculptural” + “Fractal dimensions” + “Balancing” + “spatially-dispersed” + Garment making + Friendship. . .