Small Man detail
Small Man’s Syndrome (detail), mixed media on a door, 1998 copyright GPD

Scrap what you think you know.

Start over fresh and fine.

Stop being so arrogant, the one and only show.

Lose the mind… loose the mind.

Let us go afield.

It’s desire that torments us,

it’s the thought that’s unreal.

It’s the mind that supercedes us-

Using the body as a shield.

The truth may be ugly,

it must be revealed.

It’s truth that will save us,

the truth may help this heal.

Scars are everywhere, more than what you see.  They’re hidden behind our business suits, skinned- with make-up.  Hiding- been that way for so long so long- hiding, we’ve forgotten ourselves.  We’ve had to.  Our earthly burden: our body, so heavy, so time consuming with its need, such a harsh punishment encased in flesh hung from armatures of bone… intended to break down, to corrupt.  It’s the basis for your self-generated disgust with the natural.  You see your bodies as inviolable thus your aging as disfigurement, your scars and stretch marks as ugly.  We- those like me- choose to disfigure ourselves to beat nature to the punch.  Tattoos and piercings.  Hooks and studs.  As of yesterday, we’re a nation ill-dignified.  Our rights have been sold with impunity.  The river’s grown thick with unclean forms.  It daily grows heavier, the dollar made flesh a godforsaken landscape.  Those like me, like us, don’t fear annihilation: we desire it.  We’re all unified by our descent into death, yielding to the pull of the ground- the earth’s way of calling us back home.  Our scars are our pride; the pride of survival in this humanically fabricated zone.  We tattoo ourselves with extant inks covering our fleshly canvas with colorful histories.  Torturous with sweet spot prickling, this action takes our minds on needled wings to heightened space.  We clear our eyes, our limbs, clogged with creature comfort like a greasy smear cataract: clogged blind: obscured with the flipped tar of the mid-road.  They feed us their exhaust… already paid for.  We choke on the smoke… already financed.  We are free to be a smear within the spot glommed into multiple smears that blot out double yellow lines.  On the highway waits someone bigger than you are.  But when that fish hook runs through your soft belly, or your thigh, or when you guide the razor blade into an already open wound, making it a little deeper, a little wider, you realize that you can control something- certain choices are yours… alone.  Have you created a pig-sty or a palace for yourself?  Without dignity or love our futile efforts bore deformed fruit in this dead place.  When did we wage such a war on ourselves?  When our minds turned to stone and our gardens died, shame polluted us and showed up on our skin.  We’ve done away with our mythology, pulled away from evolution afraid of our own divinity, untouched and untouchable.

Only you can change it.

It’s the disease of comfort and apathy that’s caging you.  You see it too.  You feel the pestilence inside you, flowing like poisoned plasma, and you long to bleed it out.  Bleed it out! I say.  Gut it!  Start over!

Prize winning scars are gained only through careful cultivation, love and focus.  Because of these hooks and blades, we have advantage over those of you who could never carve their intentions into a surface, keeping them in permanent record.  The flesh contains a memory like a road map of our souls.  Unlike the solitary mind which can pretend and distort in so many subtle ways, the flesh is hard evidence of a life led.  We are faithful to our search for experience.  We collapse in endorphin ecstasy from the ripping of flesh or the sting of a prick.  We were stuck until we slashed our way out.  We can be artistic.  We can be beautiful.  We can be purified.  We want to feel again.  We want to feel everything, but most of all we want to be wanted by ourselves, alone, then together.  We can be free from the heavy load of survival in a careless, thankless society.  There is freedom in escape from the loathsome comfort that pools like stagnant water in our organs.  Freedom to love and hate the mind behind the soma, as it is, as it can be- knowing that your somamind can only flower through attentive experience.  This somamind is tired of prescribed boredom, of dollar sign dreams.  This soul is tired of that big pacifier jammed into our ever sucking pusses.    I’ve traced the scars traversing my arms and legs, big and fat like bulging worms, bellies full of earth.  My Personal Freedom.

Some of you still say we hate ourselves.  Maybe it’s true but it’s what you taught us to do.  You label us self-mutilators while you cherish your gym bodies built by tearing muscles, cracking your bones and starving.  Piercings and plastic surgery, we’re all in the family.  Who hates who?  Only the soma knows the final score.  I’m pointing my severed finger at YOU… you who are forever protecting your institutionalized pecker order… in the home, school, office, Whitehouse.  ‘What happens when you get pecked too much?’  We ask as we lay, wasted, on the bare floor and the bed bugs and cockroaches you’ve allowed to proliferate scurry over our bodies.  Who hates who?

I take refuge in the purifying rite of pain, seeking esteem in my own way and my own time.  As I peel my flesh away, I start to feel- to love- again; it’s not like the consuming and petty love I was accustomed to before I tore myself open like a bag of chips.  It’s a vast horizon, where I can breathe and settle unsettled, where I can see past my own center into worlds beyond.  I travel through my body- which at times seems like a muddy shallow- but, before long, I am in the clear.  I am awake.

There are no more mouths or movies to degrade my imagination.

Nothing that was ever said matters.

I am stripped bare.

In my secrecy, I carve myself into a new form, I re-shape a form falsified by regret.  Commerce deals with products which are only bodies in a line.  My transformation is moving right along, gaining momentum.  As I break down, metal rods and polymer will replace my tired bones.  With the coming of steel and plastic comes a new era on this blind, torn earth.  I come aloft on my flying bed of nails and needles.  I am a new creature in the shape of tomorrow.

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