Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Memento Mori

 I've had some pretty frustrating anger management issues lately.  I seem to be entirely done with this life.  The only peace I find is in exploring and shooting.  I got a morning off today, which was nice.  I sat on the deck, just wanting to get through another tractate of Plotinus, half absorbing the material, I got to the fifth tractate, Love, which I decided I would also read, because I appreciate what the ancients write about love, beauty, and soul.  While Plotinus was going on about Aphrodite, Eros, Penia, and Poros, recollecting Plato's arguments in Timaeus, Philebus, Phaedrus (I need to read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance again), and Symposium, all of which I've read,

my wife, who was lying naked in the sun, ten feet away from me, and finally reading Sally Mann's Hold Still,  which I read months ago and recommended it if she truly wanted to understand my drive, threw some quotes at me from the forward, one of which I noted: Émile Zola speaking of the "threat" of this new creative medium in 1901: "...you cannot claim to have really seen something until you have photographed it."  That got me thinking about my unappreciated creative drive.  Then, while I was distractedly trying to get through Plotinus going on about the ancient's ancients, she threw a quote at me that I didn't note, but remember vividly: “When an animal, a rabbit, say, beds down in a protecting fencerow, the wight and warmth of his curled body leaves a mirroring mark upon the ground.  The grasses often appear to have been woven into a birdlike nest, and perhaps were indeed caught and pulled around by the delicate claws as he turned in a circle before subsiding into rest.  This soft bowl in the grasses, this body-formed evidence of hare, has a name, an obsolete but beautiful word: meuse. (Enticingly close to Muse, daughter of memory, and source of inspiration.). Each of us leaves evidence on the earth that in various ways bears our form, but when I gently press my hand into the rabbit’s downy, rounded meuse it makes me wonder: will all the marks I have left on the world someday be tied up in a box?”
That, of course, pushed my mind back into the panic that has ruled me for the last decade: what am I accomplishing?; what am I going to leave behind?...even if it is just tied up in a box?  I may not have the impact on the world that I always wanted to have, but what kind of impact will I have on the few that can go through the stuff, assuming they don't just toss it because there is so much crap?  Remember death.  With my luck I'll live another fifty years, against my will, but in the meantime, accomplish like you're going to die tomorrow. 

1 comment:

  1. Your writing, sir, is as outstanding as your art. Not one ounce of bullshit in it.