Friday, November 16, 2012

The Impossible Task (dances of death)

The Impossible Task:

Go where you never were, meet her on the precipice of her demise, hold her hand like a friend, step inside her body, look back at yourself, and feel what it was like to let go.

Dance it.

Change your mind (there is no changing your mind).

Lose the feeling of the earth below you and fall forward - and now fall backward because you can. Fall sideways and fall up. Taste your skin one last time. Then do it again. Things are moving slowly now, and there is no clock and there is no sundown and there is no earth below you. Fall up. Fall up.

Let your lips part just slightly and feel the short breath come out of you, as if someone had hit you in your stomach - a love tap. Love this feeling of breath coming out of you. Love it enough to hold your breath until you feel you might burst; love it enough that no one will get it but you, now suck in all of that air around you; make your arms wide and pull the air to your mouth and shove it, fucking shovel it in there, be greedy with this air, your breath, your last breath. Fill your lungs past capacity. No breath out. Gag on this air. Collapse on this air. Now breathe out. P-huhhhhhh.

It's a shallow exhale when you've taken so much in.

Ever so gradually you'll feel the earth below you. Whenever that happens, this task is complete.


Ishmael Houston-Jones and Chris Cochrane and Dennis Cooper made a piece about love and sorrow. It's a real "artist's work," as we all learned early on to quite naturally associate love with very little else but sorrow. There's lots of loss in this piece, but it never quite ends. The lights just turn off and eventually they come back on and we find ourselves standing in applause. So the loss is cyclic. Loss-love-sex-loss-violence-loss-disease-love-loss. Yet the boys also pile atop and claw at one another; they come out of the woodwork; there are more of them than I bargained for. It makes the solos even more apparent (though they are all soloing, it seems). All these boys - there's something building there, too, in the midst of the losing of things. Some things building and losing and building back. No zero sum. That's the economy of sorrow, I guess.

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