Monday, May 18, 2009

As pants the hart for cooling streams...

"My little studio has never been profaned by superficial, feverish, mercenary work. It’s a temple of labour, but of leisure! Art is long. If we work for ourselves, of course we must hurry. If we work for her, we must often pause. She can wait!"
-- Henry James, "The Madonna of the Future"

Since I am working for Art and not myself I shall pause objectively and with good humor, trusting in my Muse's eventual return, rather than inwardly launch invectives of bitter self-reproach (today, at least).

I have noticed this capacity for objective thinking and prudent, pruned-in action emerges in me only when my emotions and physical impulses are at a very low ebb.

Example: I read 3 of the driest Henry James novels by 10 am today, and have no desire whatsoever to jog.

Other objective thoughts:

I have noticed that every time I date someone who captivates me physically, the focus and ardent attention I usually reserve for quiet union with the Divine seems to divert itself into entirely sensual channels upon which I concentrate instead.

Psalm 42 says:

"As pants the hart for cooling streams
When heated in the chase,
So longs my soul, O God, for thee,
And thy refreshing grace..."

Yet how easily does my mind substitute an inward-seeking "heated in the chase" longing for God with an outward-searching one for pleasure with Man!

Even so, I refuse to believe any interaction rooted in true affection (on my end, at least, I can confirm) is otherwise than blessed by, as well as the essence of, true Divinity.

PS It was my little brother's birthday yesterday. He is now 15. I hope to see his dear little self very soon, and figure out some way to do it which does not involve him finding out I'm an "Off-Broadway dancer for matinee shows" as a friend recently and politely termed my occupation.

PS 2 I just realized, with the exception of art modeling, which I did for 7 years, most of my other jobs have all lasted almost precisely 6 months apiece. I wonder if this will hold true for dancing?