I’m mostly on Tumblr nowadays, so if you want to see my art blog, writing, and see my more recent projects, they are here! http://beloved-destroyer.tumblr.com
I recommend ‘The Riddle of Eyes’, a cyclic scroll illustration I made for my senior thesis, and ‘The Fool’s Journey’. They are both kind of weird and metaphysical so if you would take your time viewing it, I’d really appreciate it! There’s a lot there, and the point is for you to interpret it for yourself!
Here’s a peek of the kind of stuff I do (snippets from ‘The Riddle of Eyes’:
Much love, little ghost.
He smiled to himself, to think of them all. He was an old man, now, but he had once been young; he had once known so many beautiful young women. The truth is, he didn’t miss them. Each girl, glowing and special in her own way, had been wonderful while she had lasted, and left not a moment too soon. He hadn’t ever wanted to settle.
But sometimes, the loneliness caught hold of him, and maybe he felt a whisper of regret. He’d think of one girl’s voice, another girl’s scent, and he’d think ‘I could have been happy with her’. But it wasn’t true. We all choose our paths. Desiring another path, after you have already chosen your signpost, is foolish.
He leaned back in his chair, drinking a beer, staring out at the melancholy summer brightness. Summer was always too cheerful; the nostalgia was so good that it ached. He inhaled deeply and closed his eyes, smiling to himself. Love has to hurt just a little, or it’s not love.
Very recently, as opposed to long ago, something happened. I feel the need to point out that it was recent, because storytelling conventions would have you believe that anything worth talking about lays in the forgotten past. This is a cheap trick, so that writers don’t have to feel so bad about taking liberties with the truth. I’ll tell you right now, I am straight-up lying to you. Nothing actually happened.
But let’s say that it did. Let’s say that a young girl gave her first kiss away to her best friend, and let’s say that this ruined the friendship. Let’s say that in each other’s arms, everything felt right, and okay. Let’s say that they were destined to fall apart, because they did, and what is destiny except the way the cards fall? What is destiny except hindsight? What is destiny except the words we use to tell HiStory?
So let’s say that after kissing, they parted ways, and kept walking. That they crossed paths from time to time, but that she couldn’t stand to see him because her emotions were so strong. He was like a black cat, bringing chaos and bad luck down on her head every time he sat, waiting, warm eyes impenetrably staring her down. It made her so mad. Let’s say that she left everything behind, because she associated it all with him. Because she associated herself with him.
She bicycled for days, over the same hills, through the same river valleys, cleansed by beautiful summer rainstorms. She forgot about all of it. She buried HiStory so deep, it became fossils. Bones that hardly hint at the truth of the matter.
And then he kept coming out of nowhere, trying to explain himself, but he didn’t do it well enough. She couldn’t understand what he was trying to tell her; whether he loved her, whether he loved her and didn’t know it, whether he loved her but was scared, whether he didn’t love her but just felt bad. Her own love, like a low-lying cloud, covered everything in mist, hid the tops of her trees and dampened her heart’s grass. If anyone was there, she couldn’t see them; the mist was too thick.
Let’s say that she felt things so strongly that it literally destroyed her. Let’s say that emotions are of no use; that actions speak louder than words, and that actions motivated by the truth will have to be at least partially divorced from feeling. Let’s say that feelings have a place, as a motivation for something thought when clear-headed, but that clouds of love only serve to block out one’s own sun. And your sun is the one thing that you should be sure you can trust.
Let’s say that it never happened, that her first kiss was never stolen. Because I was lying, stupid. I’m a writer. I lie to reveal the truth.
It’s not a big deal, and I’m not crying.
It’s just that I get scared sometimes, of things unseen. I have to blur out the real world a little, with some tears, so that I can see those hidden things more clearly.
I’m not crying.
It’s just that I can’t always tell what feelings are mine and what aren’t, and I feel them all, and it’s overwhelming. I feel the whole world, and the world is 75% seawater, after all, and all that water has to come out somewhere, so my eyes spring leaks.
I’m not crying.
It’s just that I’m a mucky mermaid, a strange fish, and I wasn’t built for this dry concrete desert. I was built for a wetter place, a darker place, a place full of strange lights and eerie motions, a place of vague undercurrents. I was supposed to traverse between the world of light and shadow at will, be able to go down where light serves no purpose and rely only on feeling to get by. I was supposed to be able to take those things back up to the surface, shine a light on things long hidden.
I’m not crying It’s just that sometimes the things I shine a light on weren’t something I wanted to see. Sometimes it’s something that I wish never existed, but you can’t just destroy something because you wish it wasn’t so.
I’m not crying, it’s just how I talk. Through tears. And everything exists for a reason, but it’s so hard for me to explain what those reasons are. I know, by touch, by their own special braille, I know. But I don’t know how to express a feeling. Except through tears.
It’s not that I’m crying.
I’m just crying.
You’re the ocean at dawn, grey and solemn and beautiful. You make me feel lonely. You sting my eyes with salt. I can walk beside you for hours and never say a word.
You’re the ocean at dawn, tinged with excitement and promise. I know that if you’d only send me a message in a bottle, or a ship on wings, I would begin an adventure that never had to end.
You’re the ocean at dawn, all sighs and harshly real. You could be my end, you could be my beginning, you could be everything in between. But you don’t owe me a thing, and you’re so much bigger in my eyes than I am in yours. Your eyes, green and glittering, amused and angry.
I’m barely a blip on your goddamned radar.
I could drown myself in you, but I’d hate to give you the satisfaction of seeing another mermaid turn to foam on the crests of your waves, the satisfaction of seeing another ship wrecked on your rocks. You don’t need my empty shell tangled in your seaweed, washed up on your beaches.
You’re the ocean at dawn. And the ocean only has eyes for the moon, only has time for the sun.
I’m neither such thing, but I bet I can join them.
I’ll be a star in the desert. I’ll go where rocks and dust have fought to free themselves from your clutches and won, and I’ll embrace them with my subtle glow. I’ll get some distance, some perspective. I’ll let the sun rise, let it set, and see what the moon has to say about the whole thing. If I can get up in the sky beside the sun and the moon, will you miss me then? Or will your dawn, your waves, always wash me out?
Pen in hand. Scritch scritch scritch…
I bided so much time in that place, trying to believe that I was only there because I was doing something productive for myself, that I was an artist, that I was making art. I almost believed it wasn’t just because you implied that you might be back. When the door opened, and I heard a certain rustle, I knew that I had been lying to myself. My heart quietly climbed up my throat and absconded from my mouth, as my eyes consciously averted.
My glasses were off, though, when you came in, and you came in too fast, too quick, a blur. It’s a good thing that my heart wasn’t there; my eyes could barely stand the sight without watering. You weren’t the fun companion that you had been when you left earlier that day, you weren’t the familiar love. You were the familiar hurt.
I tried to convince myself that you weren’t that, but you quickly rushed about, talking about other people, making it clear that you weren’t sticking around in any sense. That’s how I knew for sure; knew for sure that this time you were pain.
I went back to the corner inside myself, and watched distantly, like an audience member to my own life. Despite the desire for a fourth wall to shield me from the reality of the situation, I put my glasses back on and could see all too closely and clearly. Almost before I could register that you were with me, you were gone.
I tried to laugh lightheartedly as you left, because I knew that if you registered a note of reproach, it would only drive you further away. I know you don’t mean to punish me by leaving, but it feels worse every time.
Am I an armchair, there for your comfort, only somewhat inconveniently taken up by another person every now and again? Am I a pretty window view, only given meaning when you gaze at me? Am I just a mirror for your beautiful reflection, a dull and lifeless stare otherwise?
When did I wake up a dog, pining for a master who hardly thinks of me? It seems to me that I go to sleep every night, too human.
A long time ago, I became an echo in a dark sea cave, in love with a glorious golden daffodil that comes by but once a stormy spring. My tears ran and kept running, but a weak echo such as myself has no face to express them without your own to borrow. I hoped that by masking my face those tears would stop running, and I wouldn’t have to lose sight of you. I didn’t know that tears could run for years. I lost my face, and I didn’t know that I would lose you not once, but many times.
I am glad to be only an echo. Whatever created this echo could only feel this pain even more keenly. I take off my glasses, and things become a fuzzy and indistinct limbo once more. My heart comes back to me, tail between its legs. I wrap it up in so many bandages, tightly, so that it is a hard numb lump; and put it back where it belongs, at the back of the hollow sea cave of my chest. I will forget what daffodils look like until next spring.
Pen in hand. Scritch scritch scritch…
join me on a journey through my mind in which I question if perhaps the attempt to explain is not also related to the time perception that is uniquely human.
I remember seeing a Discovery Channel documentary on the evolution of humans, and at some point in our evolution them making the distinction that man could, from then on, consider the past, present, and most importantly, the future.
Now the only perspective I have is that of a human, and not even a particularly genius or knowledgeable human, so bear with me as I extrapolate that humans have a unique capability to perceive time as a thread. A thread sewn through moments and events. We perceive this flow, when really there is no literal flow, there is only the present, the physical, that which exists. Now.
I feel that this is connected to the ability of humans to try and explain things, and come up with stories.
Scientific Theories can never be proven correct; they can only be disproven, or persist. Albert Einstein once said something to the effect of “No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment can prove me wrong.” Why is this? Why have theories and stories if they can not be validated, but can be invalid? For example, we can make an explanation for psychology, the Oedipus complex, fetishes, etc, but while we can potentiall find evidence or an argument that invalidates it, we can not say that it will always be true, in every case (because while something observed can not be denied, it can not imply potential observations, it is discrete).
We, as humans, seem to take all of the things we observe and weave it into a story, so that we can understand. So that we can feel secure and certain, and thus able to accept the changes that come. We can not live utterly in the present, because we are aware of a ‘future’, and we are aware of the need to adapt to it. So we weave everything together to make a story that we can understand, so that we can try and understand what is coming. But while we can create an illusion of certainty, we can never really be certain. While we can create an illusion of truth and reality, we can never truly know it.
Things are merely so.
Thank you for going on this adventure with me. I’m going to go finish reading my art history homework. Then I’m going to collect a bag full of grass. And some moss. Lots of moss. Well maybe.
I guess I won’t be able to ensure that this is what the future holds until it’s already being done, hm? And once it’s in the past, I can never be certain that it really happened, can I? Even as it happens, it could be some elaborate hallucination. But there’s no point in believing that, so onwards and sideways!