Happy Mabon – Fall Equinox! I am almost done with my second painting in the series, honoring Mabon. It is a time of balance between Dark and Light, with Dark winning as the days get shorter and the nights longer. Darkness, by the way, is not bad; it simply IS. It is a time of rest, reflection, and restoration.
My personal reflections have mainly been about finalizing my plans for next year. My biggest decision has been whether or not to pursue additional schooling (grad school or a second bachelor’s), or to take what I have, which are the basics and fundamentals, and continue to develop them on my own.
Complicating the decision somewhat is the fact that I have rediscovered writing, which I studied years ago while pursuing my first degree in English. I knew that I would write again someday because the idea kept coming up during my visioning sessions and journaling. But I wasn’t ready. I’m not sure what kept me away from it for so long other than extreme burnt out from academic writing during the undergraduate years and, perhaps, insecurity. But taking 3 writing courses this semester has pretty much changed my life. My days have taken on an excitement that is hard to describe. Between writing and painting it is really hard to think about anything else. Here is a little writing sample from my playwriting class:
[The setup is that we had to write from the perspective of the opposite gender and the character had to be between 55-75 years old, married 3 times, has 2 kids, lives in a trailer park, and has recently been diagnosed with cancer. The character is feeling like their life is meaningless. He (or she, if the writer is a man) flashes back to a specific summer when they were 13 years old where they made a life-altering decision. My character’s name is Louis…]
The boys don’t call much anymore, but they usually remember my damn birthday. No call yet. (takes a drag on his cigarette, then shakes his head). Kids are so ungrateful. Don’t realize how good they got it till it’s too late. (pauses). Till you’re on death’s door. Washed-up. A big nothin’. (takes another drag and shakes his head). I can’t blame ‘em though. I was the same way. Cared about nobody but myself. All that mattered was fun and there was no tomorrow. Almost six feet tall at 13. Can you believe it? (smiles broadly and stares into space) Yeah, summer of ’66. Goddam parents off my back, doing their own thing, sisters off doing God knows what. Just me, wandering the camp grounds. Finally feeling free. God, she was beautiful! And I was dumb as hell. She was sixteen, but might as well been thirty. Sassy, trash-talking – the kind of girl that makes you forget things. She thought I was sixteen too. Who was I to say something? What guy would have? Listenin’ to Dylan all day, sneaking smokes and beer at night. Talking and screwing in that old beat up Nova of hers. Six weeks of heaven. Summer of ’66! (chuckles softly, then looks sad). I didn’t have a choice, though, did I? Tried to do right by her. She was everything in the world to me back then. What the hell did I know? Thirteen. Fucking thirteen and a father. Thought mom would never stop screaming. Kept yelling about sin and hell. Said I’d burn in hell for what I done. I felt like a real pervert after that. Dad thought I was an idiot but didn’t say much. They both assured me I was on a grease-pole to hell and I’d better do the right thing by Jenny. So they signed the papers. Somehow I found a job. Poor Jenny. She felt like it was all her fault. Kept lying about my age even after she knew the truth. She thought it was her fault she lost the baby too. I thought it was mine. Thirteen-year-old sperm maybe ain’t the best. Anyway, she lost it and we lost each other. I went through two more after her but at least I got my boys. Guess my life ain’t a total waste. I got them boys. (phone rings and Louis’ face brightens). Finally! Ungrateful little shits.
So now I have to make the decision of whether to invest the time and money in grad school for writing, or perhaps a second bachelor’s in art, or to just live life, find some sort of day job, and continue to work on my craft. To be honest, the latter sounds more exciting and romantic but I have no way of knowing whether or not is the best career move. There are few set career paths for artists. You kind of have to obey your Inner Guide, face down the fear, and just do it.
In the meantime, please enjoy my explorations this week. As I said, I am almost done with my second Wicca painting, for Mabon, and I included some watercolor sketches/exercises as well.
Have a great week and follow your bliss…