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save the lama 2019 0218

Here is an “alternate Universe” version of a thing I did just shy of five years ago. It was in pencil and little of the acrostic poem was done. I made a copy of it, did some more peripheral drawing, inked it up, and added the complete (if occulted) poem and spot color.

Here is the poem, hidden lines and all, and acrostic line breakage disregarded for clarity:

Save the Lama for the Drama

Sown, when our flags and hearts are at half-staff
And self-appointed enemies would laugh
O, vested interests give pause. What for
Each involvement spawns esprit de mort
The Tragedies of living make us sigh:
How often pain seduces us to die.
E’en worse: to odd destruction we are led.
Lo: then more pained apocalypse ahead
Or altered consciousness or Disser A
Make head-in-sand-impostures take their aim.
A LOT of Aitch Why Pea Oh Ex Eye A.

Note: Aitch Why Pea Oh Ex Eye A spells Hypoxia, a condition of not enough oxygen delivered to the brain, inducing symptoms of blue-faced hallucinations.

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Two people, or maybe three, or maybe two at different times. A defective chess board, or maybe a more perfect, cruciality-driven meld of game and life.

Most of this was done late December 2018. Today I made modifications. It is not new for an artwork to change with time: the whole film medium depends on that dynamic. Here you have documented static and dynamic, with two specific, but not too specific, times.

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Once upon a time, in the William C. Jack Elementary School library, there was a book of mysteries for children that was edited by Alfred Hitchcock. In it Mr. Hitchcock stopped a story in the middle and told his readership that they had just been given a clue. That’s all I remember about that book, but it did lead me to another, also edited by him: STORIES THAT SCARED EVEN ME. For some reason, after I “not finished/finished” this drawing, I thought of that book. I also thought of my friend Manuel Paul Arenas, whose writings favor the macabre. I thought that it would be nice if Manny wrote a story for which my drawing is the perfect illustration. I haven’t asked him, and he probably has better things to do, but that was my thought.

 

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I made these around the end of 2006 and the beginning of 2007. My mother acquired them, probably as gifts from me, and while my Aunt Diane was visiting this weekend and making Mom’s home more livable, she saw a box labeled “Gary’s Pots” and when we opened it there they were.

Mom is keeping the leftmost one, and at her direction I’ve put it in the middle of her dining-room table, for future use as a flower vase. The rest will go home with me with Mom’s blessing.

I missed Caffeine Corridor tonight. Fell into an exhausted sleep soon after I got home and woke up too late to get there on time, and with necessary laundry to do besides. Alas, I missed my fellow former Monsoon Voice, Susan Vespoli, whose poetic scapes can be so pellucidly magical.

Under “house arrest” while laundry was cycling, I took chalk in hand and did this mood reflector.

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Here is a companion piece to “The Great Human Adventure, Part VIII.” I think the two will work as a diptych, but we’ll see.

Before I started working on Part VIII I chalked up the back of the paper it is on and placed a piece of black paper behind it and at an angle. Then I drew with a hard-pointed mechanical pencil with sufficient force to impress the line drawing onto the black paper. I’d originally intended to glue a lot of cutouts from the black paper onto the White, but I found that just three were enough.

After I finished and posted Part VIII, I was taken by how completely different the chalk line drawing proved to be, despite being–literally–the same drawing. It was like the second drawing was a whispered rumor of the first.

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At 64 years of age, with my memory fuzzy about previous artwork and/or postings, I can’t remember whether I’ve done a “Great Human Adventure” piece before. The “Part VIII” serves two purposes. It’s unique even if I already did a “Great Human Adventure.” It also acknowledges that I am far from covering all the territory that Human Adventure may cover. When I read a novel and the characters become my friends, all too often the author wraps up all the loose ends, including the death of the main character, and leaves no room for further adventures. What I’d like to see is wiggle room for more stories, and not before the novel starts nor after it ends. “A year and five months went by and some life-changing things happened, including overseas travel and the acquisition of a scar, but we will need to put that aside for now.”

More Good Adventures are always possible. Friends, I want them for us.