"WE ALL COME FROM OTHERS"
August 18, 2016
I don't know if I ever told you this, but when you sent me a copy of Annie Dillard's Pilgrim at Tinker Creek in high school, it totally changed my life. I've been writing creative nonfiction, inspired by Dillard, ever since. I still work in IT as a technical writer and trainer, but my passion is creative nonfiction. I just finished an online course in Experimental Forms in Creative Nonfiction, and I loved it. I've been submitting essays here and there, but it's hard to find the time with working full time and having a family. Anyway, I just wanted to let you know the part that you played in inspiring me!
A wall of glass doors open into this room. Eight possible entrances, eight possible exists. You are entering. The portal opens to music that sucks you in. B C G. B C G. The notes repeat like waves, the seventh one the highest, the one you ride out on, your body washed by smooth water. But this wave never crashes onto shore. There is no shore. You can feel wind blowing lightly even though you are inside. Inside Outside. You are back inside your mother’s womb. You are coming outside to the light, you are upside down. You are learning your first words. You are reading your first book. Inside Outside Upside Down.
12. We All Come From Others
You know this. You’ve seen it before. But now you know.
23. Always Remember How
She is pregnant. See the baby? Its body, within her body, is circled in red upon the black & white film. One hand supporting her back, another resting on her belly. Always remember how. B C G. Remember these notes. Remember how to play them. If you remember these notes they cannot be taken away from you.
59. The Marriage of Art & Science
The video plays in slow-fast motion, clipped yet smooth. The black limousine is in motion. So are the flowers flung backwards, floating through the air. You stop and stare as she pauses to look over her shoulder and she is beautiful in white. She is posing for the ceremony. She is beautiful in white. He is her shadow in black; his hair falls over his eyes. Everyone is beautiful in black and white. She is Art, he is Science. Stop ( [_] ).
Rewind ( << ). Play ( > ).
You laugh during the day. You cry during the night. Who are you? What happens at twilight?
69. Me & Will
How could you have missed this one? You will create an image of your own instead, but you will keep the music. Especially the cello pulling on strings which connect you to this room. This is Me. Where is Will? How do you get the “&” that will bring you together?
75. The Muse
She wears a red draped gown. The trees are blue. The sky is yellow. The sun is green. It does not matter because the projected light fuses them all together. You have lost your muse. This one costs $290 and is made of Plexiglas and Cebachrome so it won’t shatter like yours did. You will take this muse with you and reflect it upon all of your blank white walls.
6. The Logarithmic or Equiangular Spiral
What? You move on to the next one.
Dancers dance. Plié. Dancers. Tour jeté. Stretch your neck. Relevé. Lower your shoulders. Relevé. Curve your fingertips. Relevé. Point your toes. Extend your leg. Arabesque. Keep your heels together. 1st through 5th positions and you are in 7th. You create your own steps. You invented toes. Relevé en pointe. You don’t have any knees so you don’’t have to bend. Plié. You have always been a dancer. You will always dance.
39. Vision Channel Device
Use your Vision Channel Device. You choose to illuminate. Leave the potential of light hanging by a cord, or squeeze it to shine on the paintings before you. Red. Blue. Art should be hung. Use your Vision. Channel. Device.
44. Blue No. 5
Blue No. 5: $1200. Acrylic Gel Medium, Wood, Pigment. If you were wood you would be slender white poplar. If you were a pigment you would be blue. Number 5 please, and supersize it to the sky.
101. Light Plant
Light plants do not need water. If you pour water on them they will spark and rust and explode. Light plants have curved blue metal branches and flower in red light bulbs. They take up a lot of space and have no life—kind of like your fat Uncle Charlie. If you had a light plant you would not miss green leaves at all. Flashlights, hosing, metal.
4. What Is Art?
What is art? Are we art? Is art art? Where art thou o’ Romeo? He will be your art.
25. Trying to Know One Another
You have been filmed. This is a movie of you and the people you have touched. To touch is to know. There is no color. Color is not necessary for knowing. You only need light to know what you have touched in the night. If you could choose an eye color, it would be amethyst. His would be the same as they always or never were, only open more.
60. See What We Saw
You want someone to see what you have seen. You want someone who understands B C G. Who hears it in his head too, the keyboards pressing into the strings of the cello and the bowed bass. You hear more meaning in the soothing, wordless vocals than all the songs on the radio. You think to yourself, this is all connected. B is connected to C is connected to G until there is sound pulsing like a beating heart would beat if it didn’t have to beat so fast and so often.
53. Growing Inside
The violins to the violas to the cellos, all lacking life—lacking strings. They are connected by a string. You are a muse, trying to know one from the other. Size matters.
1. She meets 78. He
He: Where is the art?
She: Inside, outside.
He: Did you see what I saw?
She: I remember.
He: (looking at 81. Black on White) This is who we are in the day.
She: (looking at 82. White on Black) This is who we are in the night.
He: Are you a dancer?
She: Are you?
He: We can be, together, trying to know one another…
She: Me, Will. With an & in between…
He: It will be a marriage
She: of art
He: and science.
You are She. You and He walk out together, holding hands, fingers intertwined. Only he is entering and you are exiting. You were never talking. It was only in your head. He is inside now. You are outside. There will never be an &.
B C G