..I have always been a voracious reader.. and then, as hormones hit, I became an omniverous reader, scarfing the look of foreign languages on the page, personalities in abundance, language -words- that connected, across my thinking.. - everything was food; I was Mentat; I was apprentice; I was Italian; I was James Baldwin; I was anyone.. in wandering my imagining.
The other day, I was reading an interview with Henry Taylor, and was startled into looking around in my own life - liberated by his words I'd just read in answer to the question: What’s the work of art in any medium that changed your life? -and he says:
A lot of different things. Well, I remember reading Truman Capote and that inspired me to paint, and that was probably one of the first paintings I made. It was a story called “A Ride Through Spain,” and they scream, “Bandidos!” I also remember going to the library and copying Leonardo da Vinci and looking at books like that. I think at one time I probably wanted to be a pop star. I wanted to be in a band. I wanted to be a white boy when the Beatles came out. And then the Jackson Five came out.
The prompt of that honesty, of the statement, ripens my own stretch to speak of the alchemy mix I determined, in becoming this one of me, in all its complexitity and contradictions.. -because (forgive me Henry) ..- if an artist born in 1958 can speak of his many shapes.. why can't I -a playwright born in 1957?
Hell! We're adults now; the real thing of that too. And it's time. For all our parts to speak in all their languages and artistry and conundrums in wondering, and horrors, and experiments that failed.. to let us fail better, and on occasion, fail not at all.
..I also, at an early point, was Truman Capote.. and Tennessee Williams.. and Lorraine Hansberry..
And Maya Angelou.. and Audre Lorde.. and Captain Kirk.. and -did I already mention Mentat? -and a held breath at Verdi's shoulder.. and Prokofiev's.. and William Grant Still, as he navigated Langston Hughes and Troubled Island..
I am member of every feast -anywhere.
..and still am; inside; that more often now, as COVID impedes travel.. and our current ideologies weaponize even our just mooching into a graze of cultures, and Otherness..
But even in that, I am not be confined to me; just me, seen into a containment; etched, in other's anxieties, as a Them, or a whatever. I am not that.
No.. being an adult.. and, safe to say, Old Dog, I am now free to feel only, fully me. As mosaic.
I'll introduce myself ahead..
..once I finish this https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/30/t-magazine/henry-taylor-portrait.html