Journal Entry 24 April 2021
(edited for clarity and other reasons)
What is a life? A series of days? People we meet? Experiences? But I’m starting in the middle, I’ll begin again.
This is an image of a bass guitar strap which I recently came across in a drawer while looking for something else. To my surprise the date on it was 4/21/83, exactly 38 years to the date which I had found it.
It’s interesting to see what my young self drew; what was important then. I was 21; it was just a few years after both my parents had died. I had just had my heart broken by a young women and the farthest I had ventured was Toronto. Contemplating art school or culinary school, cooking seemed a secure choice. This was also around the time I began to write.
The most prominent piece on this strap is the cross which can be seen here. Above it is inscribed P + L (Peace plus Love). Among other drawings there are quotes, “Give Peace a Chance,” “Know Your Rights,” and “The Only Thing To Fear Is Fear Itself.” These influenced me then just as they do now.
Looking in a mirror I see the same person. Sure there are wrinkles and graying hair (what is left of it), but nonetheless the same person. My physical house is disheveled, but my spiritual home is clean, or at least cleaner (like all of us, I am a work in progress).
So what is a life? Everything, and all of the people that have drifted through my life and I through theirs; the joys and the sorrows. These things make me the person I am today, or are allowing me to grow into who I am becoming. Thomas Merton wrote: “Every moment and every event of every person’s life on earth plants something in their soul.”
What I am attempting to say is this: When I made these drawings at such a young age I was in awe of life. There was so much ahead that I couldn’t even imaging it. Now, as there is far more behind than in front, and as I enter the third stage of life, I am still filled with awe.
Somehow as a young man I channeled this inner energy, and these same things matter today. Awe, yes, but other times anger. Righteous anger at injustices. Today my body hurts but my soul is on fire. But again, I am rambling, I’ll get off my little soapbox now.