If looks could kill.
It has been almost four years now since the metamorphosis of a fairly conservative-looking professional middle-aged woman into a Gollum-like creature, almost – but not quite – alien to the human form. The invigoration of running up that hill, the career path, exchanged for liberation from the future. The look of death exchanged for a renewed chance at life. Exchanged, and changed.
There is only today. A chasm opens. From the gash in my breast and under my arm flows colour, my life blood. It gushes and pours and covers every surface in my field of vision. The colour I lack is all around me. I fear not growing paler, as the brilliant hues and tints draining from me bring great joy and wonder. I can feel it: the joy of the colour.
Resurrection. Rebirth. Renewal.
I have no control over this need to capture the human form on a surface, the drive to create and through creation render my love for the body's vitality and vulnerability. Sometimes painting is a tender act of love-making, sometimes a primal dance. Always with deep veneration.
Long ago, I played with the children of the dawning of the Age of Aquarius, and longed to be a go go dancer. We laughed and sang:
Give me a head with hair, long beautiful hair!
Shining, gleaming, streaming flaxen waxen.
Give me down to there, hair!
Shoulder length or longer, hair!
Here baby, there mama, everywhere daddy daddy
… Brilliantined, biblical hair.
The shedding of my hair (yes, that's the way it happened: one great shed over a few days) forced a shedding of all the non-essential trappings of my world. It's not easy to say goodbye to an alluring sign of femininity and one's crowning vanity. To be a modern day Samson. And it's more than a little dismaying to learn that, due to the overwhelming success of the cure, it will never come back. The hair, that is (there's no guarantee for the other "it"). Acceptance is deceivingly easy, until I catch my own gaze in the mirror and am reminded that it is not.
The Chanel suit exchanged for skinny jeans and a wool cap -- I look like a rapper. This is my abstracted self. I break free.
Thank you for reading, and looking at my gallery.