Wednesday, April 29, 2009

A Charnel Chanticleer

"Alas!" said he, "O Chanticleer, alas!
I have to you," said he, "done offense,
In as much as I made you afraid."
-- Chaucer, "The Nun's Priest's Tale"

I had another day off from Tryst today, my only one for the week, and I spent my precious time alone thinking about my astrological prospects for the year.

According to my annual Chinese forecast the next 10 months will be an excellently successful and prosperous period of growth for me.

I'm a rooster, full of ego and vanity as well as ambition and trustworthiness, so, keeping these things in mind, I tried to draw a properly proud and crowing barnyard prince today, as a sort of self-portrait.

However, I soon thought of Ibsen's Hedda Gabler, and her disgust for the prospective "one cock of the walk" in her world as well as the many customers I encounter, in turn, who make me feel the same way.

I also thought of Chaucer's Chanticleer, the rooster who dreamed of his own impending death, in the end happily, albeit narrowly averted. I imagined what it would be like to be nearly killed by a flattering, predatory creature, such as the Fox who ensnared Chanticleer, feeling deja vu as the razor-sharp jaws snapped me up and carried me away with devilish swiftness, to a secret lair where I would surely be devoured...

This put me in a disturbed and mordant frame of mind again, so as I drew it seemed as though the rooster's body was sprouting, rotting and going to seed even as I created it.

Today the hollow fruit of my material creativity-- an inevitably stillborn brain-child, which just so happened to be a drawing in this case-- was destined to be a vessel of decay because its genesis was confusion instead of Virtue.

I'll redo it tomorrow when I'm sure I'll be able to draw a bright, happy animal that doesn't look so much like a charnel Chia Pet, to me at least. It has other flaws anyway, as a drawing, and needs another go.

Yes, it's all settled-- tomorrow morning I'll imagine myself as a happy, enthusiastic rooster, overcoming all obstacles and predators, ruling myself primarily and try to envision the customers tomorrow as hens instead. I'll make a beautiful new drawing and go off to dance with a light heart.

PS Went over to my old building to feed Megan's hamsters while she is out of town with her parents in DC. I'm so happy I don't live in that dirty, crackish, wackish apartment building anymore.