Presents its latest title:
Of a Temporary Anchorite
Deluxe, Limited Edition
Silk cloth covers
Three-strand embroidery thread
Hand-sewn and cased
The Inside Job
Here begins the confessions of one anchored in the desert, continuing what began in a valley in the French Pyrenees 23 years ago—this evolution in the expanse of memory’s incarnations as it lives the questions.
These incarnations have taken form through many entries and departures; expansions and dissolutions; accumulations and renunciations of inner and outer possessions that no longer serve. All this, so to move on to the new. The process has proven to be circular—an ongoing journey to the center of being, the images of which I have attempted to depict in embroidered mandalas.
In my life in the desert, I found companionship with CG Jung’s Red Book, alchemical texts, dreams, dialogues with archetypes, and a few special friends—first responders on our path to wholeness. A year into this inner exploration I found Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s Confessions. He, like myself, bore the wounds of childhood abandonment. He also wandered the earth destitute until he found his calling. He felt at home in the foothills of the
Alps, circa 1700's as I had flourished in the foothills
of the Pyrenees, circa 1990’s.
Little did Rousseau know in the 1700’s that he was crusading psychoanalytic therapies, easily at our disposal in the 21st century. In his Confessions and Reveries of a Solitary Walker that followed, he struggled to achieve victory over his emotional anguish. He sought to find understanding of his inner self while not only unsupported by his philosophe peers, but condemned by them. Banished from the society he loved, he held anchor to his own truth. He also sought meaning for his physical ailments and was often in the grips of maladie imaginaire. But imagined illness can appear and feel real. Today, there is growing knowledge that the body and psyche’s symptoms are wise informants. I have named these informants bodysoul.
I continue the evolution of my story in these pages with the understanding that she whom I call soul is the giver of images and the recipient. Who am I to know that, in obedience to her and therefore myself, she is not expanding our little story to a larger one? Who am I to presume that any phrase or poem has arrived from the poet and not the muse? Who am I? Only the omega to her alpha and the servant to her crown.
Perhaps we all have an anchorite within, a small voice in the wilderness of the unconscious that responds to Juvenal’s words, vitam impendere vero—‘To thine own self be true.’ Perhaps in our own unique ways we are living through our questions to an end that never ends. I begin again not knowing the answers. I can only say I tried.