25 December 2013

painted onto, painted gold

pop took this photo of me when i was 19 and sick, visiting him and his now ex-wife somewhere in the english countryside. we took some photos that visit that were in line with our traditional sitting. i recall the roll of film that i got back, having not yet declared my own interest in photography. in the photo i have of pop he wears a salmon colored shirt and charcoal jeans with wellies. he is fiddling with his glasses when i take the photo. behind him is a bright green field. the sky is grey. it is flat and underwhelming. as with most years documented after a certain age i recall the size and fit of the jacket i was wearing, the pants, the buttons, etc. the general 'era' of the photograph conjures up for me things so mundane that i don't really understand how they had such a profound effect on my day to day. with distance, i see that i never really looked so much different from myself in any other year, and yet in the every day i was so far removed from myself that i was on a daily basis having a somewhat out-of-body experience, meaning: anywhere but here.
here i see a face, swollen and sad. pained, and now painted. i know the face to be the SOS of a person removed, bushwhacked, uncertain, lost at sea, falling under, overwhelmed. what was it i could not carry? i know the face to be sitting against her will, i know the face to be trying to put forth, but not that cleverly so as to fool a few functioning adults. whose responsibility am i, at 19? my own, i always thought.
i wasn't seen entirely, here. and if not seen, then life can be avoided. the logic is a labyrinth and it is flawed.
{once, when i was 4, my mom brought me to a tap dance class. we were late. i recall the rows of excited young gals lined up in front of me. i would not let go of my mother's leg, though it was really more of a could not, i could not let go. i believe now that she relished me holding on to her}
{later, much later, i moved closer to the mirrors and ignored the rows of excited young women around me}
{later, much later, i go to most things alone. it's on you, i will tell you}
{every woman is only looking at herself, they ain't lookin' at you, i said, and thank god for that}
lastima lastima,
la hermosa
la niña, forever la niña.
no doubt paused in time. that shit remains difficult, remains the conversation, remains, though i can call the art my own, and acknowledge the vessel simply with bare feet on studio floors. in recent years i have rejected conversation that needs me, simply because i apparently have come so full-circle that i don't want to be needed, if this is what needing is. i have always been a judgmental confidante, but was painted as a good listener. as a child i owned the masters, but couldn't make any sense of the content or the edit.

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