The time capsule begins to break open, having protected through the dark annual passage what is to be birthed anew on this side. In my case this is represented by a block of hard wax… I have begun to carve. This seems mundane… Applying tools to inert matter. Is it really a birth? It is actually still much about gestation. I am working again with the early visual & sculptural parts of my process after so much dreaming in dormancy. The evolution begins slowly… Haltingly.
Already I have several mornings invested in this first paragraph.
There has been a log boom passing, pulled by a tugboat, yesterday about this time… full of sea-lions barking. Another tugged two days worth of barges, both piled full with squashed automobiles. Several large ships, this morning or last, have come up or gone down the channel… Still I am not inspired to write, even as an eagle of inspiration, just sighted, already has flown back into what was also true yesterday.
Chill dull greys & still icy dun descriptions… Nothing blooms in my words for this turning. Mornings are not now the time for it… These are pages of the calendar which would be lit from below & inside, by hidden coals if at all. This should be a month or two only of deep nights.
There holds the promise, like kindling unsure of the match, to come a springtime bursting with production, but first is this sweet time which so pesters those who do not know how tenuous is early creation. They fidget with its lacking even the impulse toward such promise… As being so un-formed… Yes. Or lazy…Yes. Please… Allow it to be! Or even quite too unpredictable… of course! It is necessarily thus… Let us be!
I am remembering fondly one era during which I came to enjoy the long play of a quiet dialogue with an unseen appreciator. He who might arrange some logical pretext to visit down in the shared studio of the Bothy during the hours of my late sleep above, on such mornings as these. He had reason enough to find some garden tool, yet would be more surely there to apprise & assay the night’s progress in miniature, a showing of my creative process.
The season’s growing collection of wax fantasies would be slowly stepping by turns into the music of ever more translucent light. There would be those who had long been discussed in conceptual thrills before being drawn out more onto pages of paper, working through known inherent problems… Perhaps even existing in several versions as schizophrenic wax studies… contemplating or mocking, even, each other’s faults or possibilities. There usually would be a front runner or two, having the combination of both vitality & maturity which propel some ideas forward allowing almost too little time to appreciate their heady process of coming fully to be.
Some early introductions might be awkward impulses prized only hours ago from a block of green wax, like clunky interlopers of first meetings with Michangelo’s slaves struggling out of their stone. Others might be rather more like old friends, looking in again this season for renewal & possible inclusion… knowing that in this culture not all eventual stars arrive full blown.
Like an elf for the cobbler, I would set up such show as I could, anticipating such subtle critique as might not be commented for the several more days till we might speak in the real over drinks or dinner. Such was life then, on Avalon, “the ranch” in northern California where I worked the decade before I moved North for the turning of the millennium. All is rather different now, but for the anticipation I still maintain each year in similar timing to being able to watch for myself the building of such a collection.
Not much yet to see, but, I am setting the stage, as you read… prepping & rehearsing these dances toward the private ball masque on my carving desk.