December 3rd, 2005

abstract butterfly

against the gnashing of teeth

"He saw the Jungle of his life and saw the lurking Beast; then, while he looked, perceived it, as by a stir of the air, rise, huge and hideous, for the leap that was to settle him. His eyes darkened--it was close; and, instinctively turning, in his hallucination, to avoid it, he flung himself, face down, on the tomb".--Henry James, from "the Beast in the Jungle"

So many times the solution is right before one--right in the palm of one's hand. But each person has all these inner rules--reasons why the things they have are not good enough, or why they face limitations which envelop their dreams into cocoons from which only moths emerge. Sometimes it's all there for the living, right in front of us. A frustrated office worker is really an art therapist in denial. The person too timid to sing in bars
proves equal to singing for the elderly in homes, to the delight of all. The home which seems like the fixer from the underworld rubs down into simple wood with an almost loft-like dignity. What is the secret? An inner shiver, a random oracular card, or perhaps just the small town flaw of imagining that one is meant to be happy, productive and not "stuck up". Sometimes the beast in the jungle stands ready to spring, and all we have to do is listen for the thrill of tensing tendons.