|Cafe Terrace at Night by Vincent Van Gogh|
"For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream." Vincent Van GoghArtists are seers, and so, are truth-seekers. Yet, human experience blurs the line between seeing and seeking. Certainty is flux, and flux is certainty as form is emptiness and emptiness form. The old Taoist adage of dual unity is the perplexing clarity of universal distinction. To the point, and contemporaneously with current societal and ecological trends, human life is further revealed as an innate paradox. Van Gogh continues in his mad method of artistry in saying, "I dream of painting and then I paint my dream."
The wisdom of Van Gogh speaks to my previous post, The Cubism of Unity: Shelley and the Myth of Monogamy where he speaks on God (Unity) and Love (Diversity). "Love many things," he says, "for therein lies the true strength, and whosoever loves much performs much, and can accomplish much, and what is done in love is done well." More simply put, Van Gogh confesses, "But I always think that the best way to know God is to love many things."
In the beautiful and powerful 1956 film, Lust for Life starring Kirk Douglas, the tormented genius and emotional outcast paints Starry Night, while the narrator speaks: "Sometimes I work on into the night. I'm hardly conscious of myself anymore. The pictures come to me as in a dream with a terrible lucidity." Night and dream are married in a mystical love through the human as artist, animating the spirit of the dream towards a night imbued with the life-giving stars of an empyrean both transcendent and visceral. The dream stirs from the lowest of depths, and reaches towards our greatest heights. We are besieged with an all-consuming, all-cleansing, all-awakening, all-encompassing Mystery.
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My nature writing blends into an arcane Spanish-language text. The publication circulates among Earth-lovers and wild foodists alike. Together, my readers and I endeavour through a dense thicket of swamp. Community leaders take the helm of a slow-moving canoe, shifting through the bullrush stands and mud vents emitting the hot gaseous fumes of peculiar decomposition.
|Forest Swamp by Arkhip Kuindzhi|
A rattlesnake emerges from the rushes as we emerge from the blinding vegetation. On the waters, ready to disembark for a land crawl, a comrade teases and taunts the rattlesnake head. The venomous wisps and hissing instills a deep-set fear straight through my eyes. The rattling spells virulence and ire. Reptilian awe paralyzes my arms and legs as I stare, petrified, watching the snake slither madly towards me. It darts and in a split-second latches onto my arm. My reaction is pure thought. Still as stone, I feel its fangs stick into my blood.
Old dream interpretation folklore sees a snakebite dream as a positive symbol of regenerative holism. See my recent nature writing publication for Canada's only independent news cooperative.
To return to primal and distended physical tumult
A chaotic folly
Dreaming in smokeless fires
In the post-kingdom English croak
Over bastions and landlocked heights
That furnishes much scheming
A trite & forced inhuman sense
In a war trench
Phase of lunatic civility,
As the prosperous few wade
In proud shores of quicksand
Loss of self,
Ruined foresight vanishing
Into the uncreated past
excerpts from "Horror-story jazz"