Tag Archives: Week 1

Ladybugs & Families

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My aunt believes that ladybugs are signs from the grandmother I barely knew.
When I tattooed my foot with a ladybug, though, it wasn’t Nana I had in mind, 
but a reminder of faith stemmed from watching Under the Tuscan Sun many times.
Still connecting dots I realize: faith and Nana are connected.

My Papa died before I was even imagined
sometime in 1970-something on December 22nd.
He shared a name with my uncle B, and his son Baby B

Uncle B passed away a few weeks back, December 23rd from the big C
then something around twenty-four hours later
we lost our cousin, Baby B
Three men with the same name passed December 22, 23 & 24

The morning of the family services
Auntie D asked for a sign from her mother
then went about doing her hair
only to find a ladybug in the bathroom sink in the middle of winter

Earlier in December my dad found a ladybug in a coffee cup his garage 
he tried to let it go, thought he may have stepped on it in the process
Only to find the ladybug back in the cup the next day

My tattoo never healed right
the red ink fought my skin until bits of it oozed off
and still the representation of faith remains blemished on dry skin
Even connecting the dots, identifying synchronous moments 
in time & life & on movie screens
I think it might keep it this way

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Week 1: Foundations – From rubble and ruin, we must rebuild ourselves to withstand the next great test of our strength.

Hi, I am Travis(T-Rav) Thorne A.K.A. EnigmA Jade Sky. I am a professional performance artist working out of St Louis, Missouri. I also make art from recycled plastics, circuitry, gears, motors, gears, bones, twine, glass, stone, etc…using a wide variety of tools and techniques. My drawings, and writings(sometimes shorts, or rants, but generally poetry/lyrics) tend to be my most private works, and tend to be very dark in nature…so when/if I share them, please keep criticism constructive. I found it best to start off this project with a simple introduction…sharing with you who do not yet know me where my art comes from, my roots…..my foundation.

I, The fifth birthed by the lofty loins of a mother looking to love one more child before her womb no longer bore fruit, came to be. Born into a family larger than it’s own means of support, I came into this world knowing love over money, and honesty over appearance. This abundance of love and understanding, however, was rarely shown to me outside of my family, and I quickly grew aware of how cold and cruel the outside world can really be. Teased, and beaten over sexual, and social identifiers that I myself was not yet even aware applied to me, I was often an unhappy person. As puberty made clumsy my entire body, the weapons of my tormentors gained strength, and ammunition…and as the beatings got worse, I turned to excessive drug use, and self mutilation for company.

I became a very bitter, and un-trusting person, seemingly making waste of the love i was born into. I took refuge in the acceptance of the outcasts, and the bonds I forged with them forever changed my life. These new friends not only allowed, but encouraged me to identify myself…to find and share my own voice. The voice I found was thunderous in volume. I shouted from every rooftop how proud I was to be the person I had found within myself, and made no apologies for it, which came at no small cost. By this time in my life, my eccentricities had caught the attention of educators and local lawmen. I was doomed from that point on. If my family name weren’t enough, then my appearance, and general lack of concern for complacency was certainly enough to make target me for uneven distribution of heavy-handed punishments.

Eventually I became much too much to tolerate in the eyes of those officials, and was dejected from my hometown…..being blessed with the choice of move to the big city or move to the big house, I took my eccentricities elsewhere. The hurried life of the city was the best thing I had ever experienced. The people here relished in my aberration, and encouraged me to explore and expressed myself through art in all it’s many forms, creating a sense of peace within myself I never thought possible.

All the aforementioned combined is the foundation of who I am now. I hold no regrets. All of this helped form the person I am today, and combined with the experiences of tomorrow, it will continue to mold the person I will be the day after.

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Week One: Genevieve’s Foundations

I’m Genevieve, and I’m sort of all over the place. Besides making it a point to write something (anything!) every single day, I also paint, love to dance, and have a million artistic goals in my life that include learning how to sing opera, perform belly dance and keep bees. I’m also trying very hard to keep up with a blog I started a few months ago, The Maniac’s Path, a blog unashamed of navigating difficult topics like self-harm, abuse and body image.

Spooky wanted us to focus on the theme of Foundations for this week, and without a doubt my first love was the written word. Before I knew how to write, I’m told I routinely sat at the table with a pen and pad of paper and scribbled what looked like cursive in horizontal lines, page after page, until I had accumulated enough scribbled pages to bind into a book with a stapler. After hormones kicked in, the storytelling turned to poetry – love poems at first, hand delivered through a trusted messenger (and then promptly discarded by the object of my desire), but over time I began writing poetry about the things I couldn’t find the right words for in daily conversation. How do you define that feeling when the last school bell rings to let you out for the summer? What about the quietness that shrouds the land when it begins to snow at night?

Language is derived from the word “tongue.” But I began to realize that spoken language makes up such a miniscule portion of how we, as human and sentient beings, perceive the world. Through poetry, I question our daily experience of what we think language is, versus how it actually functions and plays out. Language is not merely ink on the paper, spit on the tongue – it may be an intangible aspect of the human experience, but it is one that serves as a foundation for all of our lives; in our dreams, our relationships, and how we use language to relate back to the physicality of our bodies and the soul’s wish to endure.

So, as silly as it may seem, here is my foundation: the alphabet and the dictionary. Two indispensable tools that have been my friends for years, and with them as my foundation (and these weekly artistic prompts!) I hope to find and fashion a language that can serve as a bridge between worlds we have been raised to believe as opposite: lust and love, the corporeal realm and the imagination, soul loss and homecoming. I can’t wait to start.

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