Click the image for the first entry:
They brought me a pencil.
Just as easily broken, but the softness and variations of shading are gentler, and it emits a soothing sound (whatever “soothing” might mean for me here). As well, I am able to watch it exhaust itself, and must keep rotating it within my fingers to fashion readable markings. I do enjoy whispering in these lines with graphite. Its liminal appearance and capacity for subtlety and starkness.
A pencil accomplishes something (I am thinking). Makes tangible the dust and fog – our weathers of uncertainty. You have to squint a little to make it out when used for forming language, and it quickly evaporates, fades. Feels more made of matter than an ink pen…more temporary and inevitably fragile, decomposing.
They led me to the library today, accompanied closely, of course. I saw more colors, shapes and forms than I have seen for weeks. Selection was limited but there were some illustrated texts on natural science and even a few collections of art. “What do you think these pictures express?” they asked of paintings or sculptures I paused upon.
“Look” I said, “look.”
I pretended sullen and began to ecstatically absorb – lines with dozens of colors peeking about the edges, throwing some other sector of the painting into bright relief, leading my eyes like young tight calves signaling, dashing about in summer. My eyes leapt about after splotches and strokes, sunk slowly into (imagined) vast planes of layer upon layer of shading and tone (what an interestingly borrowed term!), scratched back, built over, washed in and out. I danced through sprays of evocative squiggles, hyphens, circles, blocks and splatters, all in the space of half of an hour (does ‘space’ really apply to sequence? To time? – “Don’t get hung up on words” again, always afraid I’ll disappear more fully, remove to too far a distance).
And why should they (or you) care? Why should anyone?
Too much shading, pencil evaporated, disappeared (literally “before my very eyes!” – what a ridiculous statement – as if eyes were anything without the information of the hands!)
Why distance is required.
This pen appears to be blue, although by the light I am provided to scribble by, it is difficult to tell (Ha! Eyes even need speech to operate!)
What messages are all our so-called senses constantly inundating our poor cerebrum with? Life is one massive assault on minds from birth until its end. It’s no wonder then, is it?
One requires a kind of distance to “see” (observe, perceive, etc.). How might one achieve this necessary gap from what one must inevitably be the substance and content of? One needs a mirror and a separate self. I believe this is variously referred to as “dissociation,” “transference,” “schizophrenia,” “writer.”
It is suggested that I attempt to describe further what I am noting down. I already know that is not possible. “Ouroborous” I say, and close my lips and eyes, quieting my hands.