Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Simon Ward


Previous post 19 June

Just back from Backpacking the South West Coast Path with my 3 stone pack containing everything you need for a home and maybe an easier option than having a house, just walk forever?
I tried to experiment with "taking a line for a walk", which was not so easy to fit in with 5-9 hours walking a day!  I still have a bit of time to play with this idea - to take one line (pencil does not leave the paper) just like I am taking myself along one line (the path).

My shoe slips and a line develops, I notice it is not straight, not where I am going, is almost on the ground, around me and against my train of thought. I watch the line, my train of thought, a random scribble, indistinct, blurred, out of control.

I spent the afternoon trying to tame the line, make decisions, almost let it follow a path, become organised. My line rebels. A scribble breaks free from description, from expression, deviates from reality, becomes more real- becomes just the line, accepting it's beauty, accepting its fate - its burning desire to make its own path. The dialogue a reflection of a dream, my path becoming a dream path, my own personal lay-line.

Quick line, zigzag, pastoral wandering. Space falters between as the line travels across my life dawning on me that it becomes a cleft, ripping apart the surface of my dreams, separating right and left, before and after, truth and theory, spontaneity and procrastination.

Though utterly flat, the line has more dimensions than reality allows, it envelops me, drawing me into its fistula - the crack widening in my imagination, drawing me in like a black hole. Knowing I cannot escape the line I am relaxed trying to be aware only of the lines ability to be me, to be all of me. I have no blinkered vision of around the line - nothing else is blank but it is openly drawn with all the lines energy.

There is only one line! A sudden realisation - how had I not noticed this before? - there is only one line! I stare bewildered and the lines proportions flex and contract, like it is breathing. Maybe my eyeballs are flexing and contracting, maybe I am just emotionally trapped.

The line is music and flashes and almost burns the paper as it rips across. It fights with the white for a kind of harmony, a balance before full rejection in favour of disturbance - counterpoint - scrawl.
The line has left me behind and I am running to try and keep pace. The line is bursting from the suppression I had locked it in, desperate to escape from my control, my management. I feel a mixture of brevity, relief and fear of letting go. My ideas feel like they are tethered to the line and are being pulled out with it like a winkle, or potatoes pulled up with the roots of the plant. I grab the line with my softest pencil and try to coax it back onto the tip. It fights with the edge, some graphite crunches, my hand feels kicked and pulled as I grasp the lines taught front edge, feel the rawness of its newly crunched tip.

No harmony, no marriage, just desperation, despair, disappointment created from the rub. should I bend back the lines will? Give up my need to be in control? Manage the line?

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