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5.31.04 Personal symbols

I've always liked language, so I guess my love of symbols goes hand-in-hand with that. If I wanted to draw a symbolic picture of My Village, for instance, there are probably plenty of little symbols and icons out there that I could borrow from.

But what symbols are purely mine? Are there images or sensations that connect up with a deeply felt concept that always makes me go oh!? I can only think of a few.

Bicycle. Today I went of the first bike ride of the season. Even though my legs were protesting on the hills, I still got the rush of flying along and the rush of memories about all those times in my life when a bicycle meant break-away independence. Jumping on a bike means I'm 10 again, exploring. No need for licenses, money, supervision, permissions. Just go. My strongest bicycle memories come from times in my life when I felt couped up and frustrated. Sometimes I have dreams of riding a bicycle with sails.

Fish. I took up fishing only in recent years. Cosmopolitan Productions grew out of Maria and I learning how to fish together and our zany babes-in-boyland efforts. I'm not particularly good and not very ambitious about it. But the fish became my symbol for maddening desire when I had a conversation one winter's afternoon with a man who taught me about "foul-hooking":

I drove away thinking about that and about those moments when the fish becomes a symbol for your heart’s desire… so close… There in the unsupervised backwaters of your deepest passions, your frustration demands a short-cut. You look down at the indifferent trout and it becomes the lover who won’t call, the spouse who turns away, the best-friend who hangs out with someone new. You obsess over it – the loss of control is intolerable – you’ll show that beast who’s boss! You jerk the line. Gotcha! I may be new to fishing but I recognize that moment. It’s the teary-eyed guilt trip, the handy short-cut when your lover, your spouse, your friend is indifferent to the color of your bait, the spin of your lure, the deftness of your presentation. Turn on the tears. Foul hook.

Bluejays. Lie in bed on a summer's morning and listen to the bluejays caw. And remember those other times you lay there and listened to bluejays. It is never very early. You should have been up already. But if you get up there are things to do -- tasks you'd rather delay, people you'd rather avoid. It's so much easier to stay under the sheets and remember a lifetime of bluejays. Guilty pleasure.


3.15.06 I almost forgot about RED LIPSTICK!



Amazon link to "Moments of Being"Moments of Being by Virginia Woolf

From the introduction by Jeanne Schulkind: "Certain images -- involving sights, sounds, odours -- also appear to have permeated the innermost fibres of her being, so that they too assume a symbolic significance: the waves breaking; the acorn of the blind being drawn across the floor; the nutty smelling gorse; the rooks cawing; the colour of the flowers on her mother's dress. Though these experiences occur on a purely sensual level they have that enduring force for VW which makes them no less moments of being than those flashes of recognition involving understanding."


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