Today Goose our house cat is keeping my company as I write my process post, he is warm and cuddly and is very particular about who touches him and where. I am much like a cat.
Today I am considering how to write about death, specifically watching it. I felt a strong memory today of my grandmother and I think it was reminding me to do something. I wrote the other piece and it’s graphic, and I wonder how to escape the cliches that come with describing someone who is dying. How do I write the scene as it was, not how I want to remember it. Peace is a lie in those last days, no matter what anyone tells you.
So I wonder how to write in depth about that, how to conquer memories that are so recent and so raw that I can’t separate myself from them, so I can’t worry about what the reader thinks. I don’t know what I think. I do know that the safety I feel here in this place, with my housemates and Goose are making it easier to write these raw pieces that are not ready to see the light of day, but they are real and tangible. They are honest and scary and they make me feel powerful, even if I’m not ready to share them yet.
Creating in a place of hopelessness or codependency or danger is harmful to me, I’m realizing that I can much better bring an artistic vision to life now that I am safe than I could in other more harmful situations. I can make work in those places, but it isn’t as good, the pain and the lessons are fine, but only when I have a minute to breathe. I finally have a minute to breathe. Life is always going to be painful, but the power of home and community lessen that pain more than anything in the world. The fact that I could call my friend up yesterday, say I’m having an art crisis, and just talk it out is really beautiful. Did we come up with an answer? absolutely not, but to have a community both in proximity and a phone call away is so essential.
I enjoy writing about process, because it feels more real even though I’m not spelling out what I’m referring to. If there’s anything I know a lot about it’s good and bad places to make art out of and from.
Until next time