“I learned in the doing how ready I had to be. Life doesn’t hold still. A good snapshot stopped a moment from running away. Photography taught me that to be able to capture transience, by being ready to click the shutter at the crucial moment, was the greatest need I had. Making pictures of people in all sorts of situations, I learned that every feeling waits upon its gesture, and I had to be prepared to recognize this moment when I saw it. These were things a writer needed to know.” ~ Eudora Welty
“The bodies of traumatized people portray “snapshots” of their unsuccessful attempts to defend themselves in the face of threat and injury. Trauma is a highly activated incomplete biological response to threat, frozen in time. For example, when we prepare to fight or to flee, muscles throughout our entire body are tensed in specific patterns of high energy readiness. When we are unable to complete the appropriate actions, we fail to discharge the tremendous energy generated by our survival preparations. This energy becomes fixed in specific patterns of neuromuscular readiness. The person then stays in a state of acute and then chronic arousal and dysfunction in the central nervous system. Traumatized people are not suffering from a disease in the normal sense of the word- they have become stuck in an aroused state. It is difficult if not impossible to function normally under these circumstances.” ~ Peter Levine
Coyote tracks in fresh, deep snow. This opening image is one I always get deep feelings from, having been out there to see it in the bitter cold of a Winter’s morn. Those Winter days are past. Maybe more snow? Yeh, maybe – it’s only the beginning of May. But it will melt in a New York minute. Tomorrow is Beltane, which encourages thoughts of fertility and growth. Yeh, buddy. Bring it on. Goddess knows I’m feelin’ pretty darned fertile these days, though at this point, as far as I can tell, it’s more groan than growth. The Sun is rising, and it never got too cold last night. Time to draw open the curtains and open the window to let the bad air out, the good air in, whatever. It’s all about fluid dynamics, systems theory, and field effects. That’s the kind of noetic stuff that feeds my left brain, ever since my right brain got too big for it’s britches. But I will . . . oh, never mind. Now, about today’s quotes. The Observer in me these days is tasked with keeping an eye on unnecessary anchors and taking a gander at the vistas ahead. But the Observer is bearing Witness to the effects of Trauma on my vision, and that of others as well. Trauma, for me, has a 1-2-3 punch, where my Third Eye is hard against the handlebars, my soul is beholding celestial wonders, and I am awakening to the face of a beautiful woman, with that of a paramedic, who just happened to be passing by, gazing over her shoulder. That’s the visual. The feelings are something quite more intense – enough so that sometimes tears slip through the overflow valve. Yeh, I feel good this morning. The snapshot of me close to death on the tarmac is one I have never been able to shake. I don’t reckon I want to let it go at this point. It is a reminder of a seminal moment in my life; a moment that wore the mask of nightmares, for three decades. But it is laundry day, so why do I need to worry about that stuff anyway? It’ll get me out of the house – and there may even be some fish and chips from LotaBurger in my future. With green chile tarter sauce. But if a fish basket does come to grace my presence I may well opt for Key Lime juice, hot sauce, and salt. With a side of Cuban black beans and rice, with chopped raw red onions. But now I’m just dreaming. That’ll have to do for now.
All is well. Goof gloriously.