Living with Wounds

Freezing rain. Nothing new on a dark and gusty morning. Feeling myself settle into the familiar. Even the familiar pains are comforting.

Maybe there is a center that holds, patiently, to be discovered again after the turmoil and apparent displacement.

I am in the process of cleaning out the library and the “atelier”, which has never lived up to its potential for so many reasons. I have no access to the studio that was shiny, new and something of a promise. Sorting through it all like an archaeologist, I keep unearthing fragments of whole lives. And for a moment I let myself imagine parallel universes where the pieces came together. This way. That way.

Means and desire. Anupama talked to me about an artist’s requisites of means and desire. But if I am honest with myself it is far too simple a thing for me to use the absence of one or the other as the excuse for silence. I will wait for things to fall into place, wait for the world to align as though it is some kind of destiny.

I have done that again and again, forgetting the burning thing until it smolders. Ash.

The once-famous Zimbabwean writer told me, and everyone else he would mock, that often the overabundance of means will kill the desire. He didn’t use the words means and desire. In fact, I forget the word he used: comfort and relevance? His opinion was that if you are not suffering, you have nothing to say worth listening to.

I still think that is a warped and self-serving point of view.

These days I want to – need to – take it all in at once.

B. calls and we laugh together. Then I send her a voice message to tell her that I’m crying. I need her to know. I need her to see the wholeness of us from my perspective.

I wonder if it is absolutely necessary to make everything visible. Knowing matters, doesn’t it? Just knowing?

Because you can always return to the center, and pick everything up again, artifact by artifact, and turn them over in your hands. Whole – and not – at once. Whole again and again, in changing constellations.

One Reply to “Living with Wounds”

  1. I know what you mean about means. I have not been able to access my study/studio/garden-office for almost 3 months because I’ve gladly given it over to my son who has moved back here with his feral cat. And on bad days, I blame my lack of access to it for the lack of order and structure and solitude in my head and through that my perceived lack of progress/creativeness. But when I look at it rationally, that’s just a lie – all I really need is a pen and my notebook and this machine to create what I need to create. Having said that, I feel like 75% of my person is in that room, its books, its pictures. But then the question is, like you said, where is my centre? It’s in my head rather than anywhere else, surely.


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