Complete process can be seen at this link. “Lord of the Things”
I regret to admit that I partook in that wicked practice of
I would like to
invite all friends and their guest to my latest showing of art. It is Oct
1st 2010. From 5pm to 9pm at “Angst Gallery” 1015 Main
Street, Vancouver, WA 98660 360.253.1742
I think that loving Thy neighbor is not meant to be easy, and will require sacrifice… My Mother taught me that every person in this world is equal in the eyes of God and should not be excluded because they are not like most people. I learned it when I was a boy in the 1960’s. She let the young hippie kids who were on the streets and passing through town with no food or place to sleep, camp in our backyard. Even though we had very little food, she cooked up a big pot of oatmeal. It was manna to my taste. I’m sure all the church going crowd turned their noses up at her. I know Reta June West DesRochers (My Mom) would have supported Obama because of her Christ-like love for the oppressed.
… a certain Liberal Democrat, Or “What don’t you get about what Jesus is trying to teach you in Luke 10: 25-37Posted in art on March 1, 2010 by dukex
It’s time to get political; personally I’ve been increasingly frustrated with the so called Christian Right and the same old hypocrisy that plague the self-righteous of the world. You all may remember what your Mothers taught you while she spoon fed you with pure love. It’s a little quoted thing called “The Golden Rule”. Does it ring a bell? Well for those who have been able to delete this valuable lesson from their memory, here is a brief description. Do to others (people) the things you would wish done to you, (your-self.) The following is a well known scripture from the New Testament, (bible). I have, as you will see; changed some of the words to help Glen Beck and Rush Limbaugh more fully understand…
25 ¶ And, behold, a certain Corporation stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?
26 He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou?
27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.
28 And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.
29 But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour?
30 And Jesus answering said, A certain American went down from Jersey to Queens, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.
31 And by chance there came down a certain Tea Bagger that way: and when he saw him,
(he could not tell if the wounded man was a real American., so…)
he passed by on the other side.
32 And likewise a Republican, when he was at the place, came and looked on him,( and saw no American Flag pin and after all he thought, “If I help this man it will cost me the money I plan to spend on my War Machine!”) and passed by on the other side.
33 But a certain Liberal Democrat, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him,
34 And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, (and put him in his own car,) and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. (Not asking for his Health Insurance card.)
35 And on the morrow when he departed, he took out (some cash), and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee. (“Single Payer Health Care”)
36 Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbor unto him that fell among the thieves?
37 And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.
If you find an old mirror, take a closer look. Lean in and you will find ripples and waves. Many have scrapes, dullness and blisters. Do not throw it away! The scars in a mirror are from years of reflecting the intensity of life. Now that you have leaned in and saw its flaws, it will not forget you…
I guess It’s no great revelation when I say the reason most Bloggers blog is because we really want to know if there are more people out there in the world that are just like us. Many blogs follow popular hobbies, sports, politics, and entertainment including an endless list of topics. The people who pen the most popular blogs do; in my opinion, not need the social affirmation that the small blogger like myself seek. Blogs can sell, persuade and convert. Bloggers can induce anger, sympathy and send a readers endorphin glands into a tailspin. Today I just want to know; is there anyone who thinks like me?
In my everyday life, I find many things in common with my work mates and neighbors. I did find one difference. The difference is that I love Christmas Music. I mean I really, really love it. I can fool around in my studio all day long, listening to those familiar carols, and be as happy as a Christmas Clam. Not the clam in the dip at the party table, but a Grandpa clam under the sand at the beach, with it’s family gathered around the Christmas tree with a roaring fire and Christmas music on the Ipod dock.
The other day at work, I started to sing “Silver Bells” and was quickly shut down by a fellow worker. “Oh man; he said don’t start with the Christmas music, I can’t take it”.
In the first part of November, I was driving back home to Battle Ground WA from a job in Spokane WA. (About a six hour drive) While scanning the local radio stations I was thrilled to find an all Christmas Music format. It truly made a portion of my lonely drive pleasant and reflective.
Because of so many family parties to satisfy at Thanksgiving this year, we had a complete Thanksgiving dinner at our home on Saturday; the week after. We called it “Thanksmas”. We also got our Christmas tree on that Saturday. My wife and the Grand kids decorated it beautifully. A few days latter, I realized we had not watered it. So with my Dishnetwork set to an all Christmas Music channel; I filled a picture of water and commenced to crawl under the tree. It being a good-sized tree I had to stick my face into the branches and stretch my arm to hit the well. The song that was playing at the time was “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” (one of my personal faves)
The very moment I inhaled the sweet Douglas fir fumes I was instantly intoxicated with Christmas endorphins. You know how it is described; that when a person dies they some times see their life flash before their eyes? Well that is what happened to me; except it was scenes of Christmases past, the smell of a new can of Lincoln Logs or the smooth shiny cold feel of a fresh box of Legos. Cold only because they had just come from Santa’s sleigh which was surely parked on our snowy roof. I lay there paralyzed as the song echoed into my childhood. Water spilling down my arm; I nudged my face deeper into the welcoming branches and drew in a larger, deeper breath. Ahhhh… I exhaled and remembered colorfully lit Nativity scenes with solemn statues in poses of amazement and rows and rows of neighborhoods decked out with twinkling lights.
At the age of 52, it is hared to hold on to those moments and so I was rudely jerked back to the here and now. The music was still on but the song had changed. I thought to myself; “Man, I am a Happy Clam”.
So, am I the only Christmas Clam on the beach?
Tell the truth.
Do you love Christmas Music too?
Do you believe in Karma? You know the “Reap what you Sow;” approach to life. Many people do. My ex-mother-in-law would say in a threatening tone,” What goes around; comes around!” NBC had a popular sitcom called “My Name Is Earl;” which lampooned what to some is a very deep and personal belief. Whenever I think about Karma, it sometimes makes me shutter to my very core. I admit I have done a few good things thus far in my life, but it’s the, “Bad Things”… that haunt me. You may know what I’m talking about? The stuff you do while you’re still learning about yourself and others; what’s good, what’s bad and what’s just plain stupid. It scares me because I should have known better… and yet, I still did what I did.
I believe it was 1967 and I was in my eleventh year. In our neighborhood, just one block west and two blocks north was a nursing home. In those days we kids called it “The Old Folks Home.” It was a grand old building with gilded trim and majestic adornments. It was not unusual for us on a hot summer day to find ourselves passing by the old Folks Home. Having exhausted all adventurous activities for the time being. We would stop in and visit with the residents there. We were joyfully welcomed by most and spent time listening to tales of the good old days. In the lobby was an old soda cooler; it opened like a chest and the bottles hung in rows, like little solders suspended in a magical cold mist. A nickel would get a freckle faced towheaded boy 12 ounce of refreshing Orange Crush. Gulping it down would give relief from the tart atmosphere that can stew in an old structure that was without a modern cooling and ventilation system. The patrons there were always kind to me and I felt close to many of them. I cannot believe it was I, who perpetrated such an offense against them.
Across the street from the Old Folks Home was a failing fence, the usual tall grass and then a sandy field with a sparse carpet of wispy shorter grasses; And of course at least one ancient, twisted and water starved apple tree. We kids spent many a hot summer afternoon digging underground forts in the soft sand. Our handy work produced a structure featuring a sun bleached plywood and plank roof with hand scooped shelves into the submerged dirt walls for holding our candles supplying needed interior illumination. Once the roof was in position and the candles lit; our sand pit became a cool (as in groovy and cool as in cold) dark Gothic refuge. You could taste the dirt with each earthy breath. This particular time we had gathered a good pile of the sour and bug blemished apples as a cache of surely needed ammo. A bunker like ours could easily be attacked from neighborhood foes. The war ripened fruit would be well suited to repel any advance from the enemy.
There we sat, with our eyes peering through strategically placed gaps in the forts construction. Watching and waiting. Cars zoomed by. Candles flickered. Blades of grass bowed in submission to the wind gust while sand peppered our anxious watchful eyes. Nothing… I was selected as a scout, then commanded to go out, observe, return and report. I nimbly crept up to ground level while doing the classic Army Man crawl. Clearly, I was an expert at this maneuver. I made my way through the rounded dunes; I popped my head up quickly and then back down hard. This method insured I would not be captured by the enemy. All was quiet; all except some movement from the direction of the road. A mad lizard like scramble and my chin was now resting on a fence board. I reached up and parted the tall grass, fully expecting to see a large contingent of enemy forces bearing down on or stronghold. Alas there was nothing. Not even a cootie-infested girl who like to force dolls on us and into our underground fort. Nothing that is except family members across the street helping their old folks out of a car and into wheelchairs. Rats! I crawled back on my belly and slid down into the fort. I commenced to give my report while I scooped the sand from my pockets and dusted out my bellybutton. Hopes of an all out war dashed. But you guessed it. There was one kid. I honestly cannot remember who for sure; was one of those, “If you’ve been given lemons, then make lemonade” kind of people and with excited eyes said, “Ya know we have all these apples and we really can’t leave them, the skunks will get in tonight and sabotage our fort.” “I say we attack!
Without hesitation, we loaded up our arms and army crawled over to the fence. I’m sure you’ve heard stories about what can happen to people under the spell of a mob mentality. It is true what they say about being caught up in the movement of the event. There we were taking aim and letting fly a barrage of hot weapons of apple destruction.
The ground around our target erupted in an applesauce hell. Many a round found its mark as their objections began to be screamed. The Old Folks looked around to see the source of the fruity offensive. A simultaneous retreat was achieved as we all Army Man scrambled into our fort hoping to escape the return carnage. We had dabbled war and now our hands were filthy dirty with its spoils. My heart pounded in the silence we all shared, waiting for the inevitable counter attack. It never came.
This is why I worry. If Karma is real then I should expect to be attacked. In my later years. When vulnerable, helpless and fully engulfed in the angst of old age. To be spattered with something sweet and sickly-smelly. Fully deserving of it. However, is that necessary? I quickly realized the error of my ways that day of apples from heaven. What I am hoping for is perhaps the Old Folks we bombed did something rotten when they were kids and Karma sent me there to administer their dose, with apples…. If not, then Karma is endless, those who deliver Justice will have Justice served on them, and the kids who smack me will get theirs, and so on, Apples from Heaven… Endless, Karma Apples. And so too it goes in war…
Me? I’ll keep my gaze upward.
About The Art
This is my latest work and is titled
It is 85in. tall and about 50in at the widest part.
It took me about a week to complete.
It has nothing to do with the story
“Karma Apples from Heaven”.
I just took the opportunity to show it
off with this story.
It is currently being shown at
1015 Main Street, Vancouver, WA 98660 360.253.1742 Leah.AngstGallery@gmail.com
Wednesday to Saturday, Noon to 5:00 pm or by Appointment
“9 Blakely Way.” That was the address of our home back in 1957; the year I was born. No NW, SW or Southeast just, “9 Blakely Way.” We lived in a small housing project built from the 30’s to the 40’s which was on the outskirts of The Dalles Oregon. It was a time of paper boys and the milkman, yes and Service Stations with .25 cent a gallon gas. Common; was Mom charging groceries on a tab at the market and Dad working a couple of nights a week cleaning up the butcher shop to pay the bill.
Our home phone number was 6-9414; that’s right, just 5 digits, no area codes or mandatory prefixes. Looking back I can honestly say it was a simpler time. I was born the last of six children and I admit I was a bit of a momma’s boy. All of the others had a time when they were the baby, but it only lasted until the next uninvited child came along, but me, I didn’t have that problem. No one came after me…
This meant I spent a lot of time hanging with my Mother and her other stay at home mom friends. I was a curious sort in my pre-school years and would ask questions like,” Do trees have blood?”
I learned at a young age that there were treasures to be had if a boy would keep his eyes peeled and on the ground. It happened when I was walking the neighborhood. Something shiny caught my eye. It was a glorious silver dollar. It filled my hand out to the very edges of its span. It was embossed with stunning detail. Man it was beautiful. I wanted to keep it for ever!
Until later that day, when the older kid two doors down informed me that I could have his Nestles Chocolate can full of marbles in exchange for my object of delight; the silver dollar. I jumped at the deal and made it home to show my mom what great glassy jewels I had leveraged for a mere dollar. In the early 60’s a person could get a lot for a dollar and my mother being a sharp girl, pointed this out. She further instructed me to return the treasures and get the coin back. I did so reluctantly.
Upon returning home she loaded me into the car and we went to the market where I was unleashed on the candy section. I could truly see the wisdom in her actions and the events of that day only added to my awe of her position of greatness and knowledge of life.
Remembering this; from then on, when traveling by foot I always kept one eye on the ground. You never know what you might find. In my travels however the treasures seamed to be few and far between. Oh sure there were plenty of sticks, rocks and lizards to be had and I did revel in shinier, more magic ones. Sometimes my attention would be drawn to a particular stick or rock. I would pick them up and after surmising that they were of no particular worth and not possessing any magical powers. I would drop them back to the ground.
As I walked away I imagined the object pleading with me not to just leave them there. The stick would reason with me that by picking it up I had gotten it’s hopes up. Perhaps it had dreamed of coming home with me, maybe even finding a nice cozy place in my room on the headboard of my bed or in a dresser drawer.
Needless to say I was an easy mark and often fell pray to their pleadings. This also translated into a personal theory that objects may very well have feelings, perhaps objects could dream, long for a “Someday;” What if they could feel disappointment and pain like me? What if that rock I just tossed into the creek couldn’t swim? Maybe it was laying next to its Mother rock and because of me it may never see her again? This could get very complicated. What about my reckless shuffle across the field? Did I disrupt the lives of many a happy object? You’ve got to get a grip here Dukie!
OK, so let me think? Maybe objects do have feelings and maybe they don’t, I’m not sure. Many objects did seem to speak to me in their own way. But maybe that was just the imagination of a goofy little boy; who by the way sported an endless bad haircut?
Well at any rate I do know this; by looking at this world which is so bejeweled with endless objects of interest and delight; having an appreciation and reverence for that which was left here by the hand of God or fashioned by mankind, a person could develop a peculiar kinship with “Things.”
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not one of the guys whose a slave to his car or boat (I wish I had a boat). I don’t spend hours polishing and waxing anything. In fact it’s just the opposite; I need to take better care of the things I have. Instead of being enslaved by the objects of my life, I like to think of myself as their Master. Maybe even the Lord of what I possess, heh… maybe even, like… the lord of my things. That’s it! I am “The Lord of My Things. No wait, try this. “Lord of the Things”. I like it! I am “Lord of the Things”. More like a “Junk Whisperer,” really.
I want to believe the past few years of my artistic endeavors have reflected my close relationship with the objects of this realm. Thus far I have found it to be a natural and rewarding approach.
Have you listened…? Then heard the whisper…? If so you know what I’m talking about.
We walked up the drive like the sign that welcomed all the “Faithful Goonies” asked.
At the top of the driveway we meet the woman who lived there and she invited us in to see the new renovation of the interior. She was very kind and well versed on the home.
I noticed on our way out the old kitchen cabinets on the side of the house and asked if she was sending them to the dump?
When she said that she was; I asked if I could have them? They were graciously given to me and I strapped them to the top of my 1988 Chevy Suburban.
Well they spent the next few years under plastic behind my barn and when we moved the only thing that wasn’t too water damaged was a cupboard door. I saved it for another two years and finally did this wall hanging.
OK, I’m sorry! To the great multitude of my blog followers, I am truly sorry. It has been a very long time since I’ve posted anything and I know many of you were worried about me.
The rumors are true; I did have an Art Attack. It all started very suddenly and I wasn’t able to call for help for months. My body is showing the signs of the wear and tear that such a major event can have on someone. For example. My belly is sticking out as far as it ever has and all my t-shirts are stained with paint and globs of glue.
One day I even found a screw behind my ear. I spent many long hours, hunkered down in my garage under hot lights with the fumes of thinners and spray paint.
The radio was switched back and forth from classical, classical to classical rock. My fingers had large balls of gluey sawdust at the tips, like when you’re breading fish; I guess you could call them “Liquid Nail, Hush Puppies.”
The Mad frenzy of production which accompanied my Art Attack resulted in the completion of several works. It had the therapeutic affects of a good artery scrapping. Aside from the belly protrusion, I feel great.
I hope this puts to rest all the chatter about my whereabouts and concerns about my health. I had an Art attack, and I survived. I am posting photos of the bits and pieces of junk that were removed from my being.
P.S. I promise to take better care of myself.
I see you standing on the corner,
I’m watching every move you make.
Your pants are made of leather
And your fingernails are fake.
You sport a gold ring in your navel,
A swear word on your lips.
You lay the money on the table
And put your hands upon your hips.
Acting out the script,
You really nailed the role
bloodied up the pages
When you paper-cut my soul.
Please take me to your leader,
And authorize my fate.
Hot cauterized my bleeder
My needs you satiate.
Your hair is all on fire
Still you draw a fleshy breath
I hear the voices of the choir
As they sing me to my death.
You put your arms around me
Then you give my soul a squeeze
The fumes rise off your body
And it drops me to my knees.
They say there is a cost
That I would have to pay
I must die upon your cross,
Then you’ll come out to play.
From the inside of my shirt
Where I used to keep your locket,
And as I watch you flirt,
I pull a spike out of my pocket…