Glorious Descent

Glorious Descent
Acrylic on canvas 60 x 40cm

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Left with but a bag of plushies I had my last day in the studio today. I leave a colourful floor, which has seen some passionate times, a masterpiece greater than the paintings I take away.

Friday, November 19, 2010

To live with oneself

These past weeks I have experienced the true extent to which mind, body and heart are inextricably linked. As I battle with living through certain events and changes I realise I am not one of those people who can be distracted by tasks, exist behind hard edges or turn over new leaves. I live through every minute and enormous detail and when not accepted, can, as I have realised these last few days, destroy you.

I have now spiralled so far down that my body mirrors my mind and I am not able to seek assurance from the belief of my heart. Contained to my room, I am sick. The toxicity of my mind is in my fever, in my skin, in my sleeplessness, in the arrows of pain down my neck. I need a friend to spoon feed me soup and play music for my ears.

I think about what Yoga teaches me, that it is a practice of the fluctuations of the mind. You can't 'do' yoga, you must learn it and practice it. It is about acknowledging thoughts and letting them go, so as not to become a slave to the mind but rather an inhabitant of the present and to lead with the heart.

I have not allowed myself to acknowledge a grievous reality so as to let it go. Too consumed with being reasonable and empathetic I have negated how utterly bereft, guilty, angry, inadequate and heart broken I feel. I am now but a slave to my mind, punishing myself with self denigrating thoughts. This miss trust that I inspire in the one I love surrounds my heart like thorns. It doesn't matter that I am trustworthy and that I have shown my admiration and devotion, when I look in the mirror I see but a failure. I feel but worthless. Amidst the distance and space from her, resentment and pain grows. I knowingly sailed close to the shore, there were rocks but beautiful blue water too and I put trust in humility, reconciled differences and love, only to hear again, that I will never be what she needs or desires me to be. It is not a bruised ego or a rejection that hurts but a helplessness. There is an ugly miss trust and distaste in myself. As my mind dangerously circles it agonises over why and how I can not fulfil the needs of the one I care most about.

It is not my intention that these words restrict emotions or exasperate events but encourage a fluidity. I hope they will lift from the page.

Returning to the practice of Yoga: If there is one one thing I have lived this year it has been to increasingly reside in the present and lead with the heart - Even now, when I find myself tormented by my mind - much more a slave than I would desire to be. I trust that my certainty will return and that I will appreciate the full extent of a whole hearted life, is to experience in equal measure that of sadness with joy, of being lost and found. This is why I appreciate the direction of so many of the postures in yoga, when the teacher encourages you to extend from the heart, the bodies centre, rather than strain other limbs, it is designed so that you can appreciate the stretch in its full potential.

The swan dive: As i extend my arms out like wings in a graceful swoop, I will gather the energy of life, contain it to the heart in prayer stance and lead to the earth triumphantly in a dive.

This seems unattainable and unworthy of me right now but I need to believe it will come true.

Monday, November 8, 2010

The first rule of fight club... well I broke it

'Don't worry' he says to me, as he straps on his gloves, 'I won't hit hard'. His arms have fought in French boxing circles, but not for many years. I feel my shoulders pull back, mouth twitch, as if I had my ego bruised, jumping around like a silly red robin, puffing out my chest, a hear thoughts 'oh yeah, well, well...' I falter and laugh, well what ? This man is 10 times my strength. I persevere, I feel like the fool. But he is the show off.

We start punching, he is so measured, so controlled, his body is beautiful. 'don't you dare try and show off madeleine, you idiot, he'll see straight through you'. We talk about why we are here, what we 'do', how funny we look together. He shows me how to angle my arms, twist with my body to hit harder. I practice. This feels better. 'So.. an artist' He ponders 'You do have a troubled mind then ?'
Lips sealed. I hit him harder.

It is time for routines: Left Jab, left, left right, upper cut, throw, duck, follow through. Now inverted. His eyes search the room, a little frantic, needing an example. He try's to perform the set, but stops after the first few hits. Faltering, his eyes quiver a little. The instructor repeats the set, 'I cannot hear him', he mumbles. He try's again, forgetting the routine and getting flustered, not looking at me 'I cannot do this.. I cannot even remember the pattern. 'Yes you can,' I tell him. I start reciting the set as he throws, accentuating the presence of my pads, hitting back harder to build a rhythm. Slowly, he completes a whole routine.

Yes, well I probably shouldn't talk about fight club - but I need to exercise the power of my memory, if it is to be my asset in fighting circles.