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Posts Tagged ‘Dante’

GC Myers- And Dusk Dissolves sm

And Dusk Dissolves“–Now at the West End Gallery



It was that hour that turns seafarers’ longings homeward- the hour that makes their hearts grow tender upon the day they bid sweet friends farewell…

― Dante Alighieri, Purgatorio



Dante had it right– dusk is that hour of recollection, some warm and some less so. As I age I see this more clearly, most likely as a result of simply having more to look back on than look forward to at this stage in my life.

Don’t jump too hardly on that last line. I feel there is still a tremendous amount of living ahead for me and others my age or older. It’s just math– the ratio of time lived to the expected or hoped for time left in one’s life– says that the greater part of our life is behind us for people of my age and older. 

And I believe dusk does often remind us of this fact. It’s a time when we sometimes pause to look back on the day, to reckon what we have done and not done during that time and to measure what lies ahead for the next day.

And sometimes this recollection extends back further than the day that just passed due to the moment in which it takes place. Maybe it’s the warmth and color of the sunset. Maybe it’s the way the landscape around us changes in the setting light, as colors deepen and contrast to the narrowing light. Whatever it might be in that moment, something triggers flashes of distant memories.

Words spoken and unspoken. Maybe just a glance from a face you remember or the most innocuous detail from some moment that didn’t seem important when you saw it so long ago.

Sometimes these moments are full and make sense. Sometimes they are fragments that seem insignificant. Yet they remain in place in our memory.

And as that moment of recollection passes and we move to settling in for the night and looking ahead to the coming day, these recalled moments dissolve, much like the setting sunlight melts into darkness.

There’s a wealth of recollections to pull from as one ages and maybe I see that in the depth and richness of the colors here. Maybe every stroke of color in that sky is a fleeting and flashing moment from my memory. I don’t know.

It makes me think of when my dad was in his final years suffering from dementia. His memory was spotty at best and often large segments of it were absent. I remember one instance when he was disturbed and asked me with great seriousness to tell him if I knew who his mother was. I went to a photo of her from her college yearbook (Potsdam 1918!) and explained in great detail her history. He listened to me more intently than any other time I can remember in my life, like he needed to know this and wanted to inscribe it deep into memory.

Looking back on that moment now, I can only imagine him as the Red Tree looking back and, instead of the richness of individual colors in that sky of memory, he is seeing a hazy grayness with occasional peeks of color. A recognizable tree or hillside whose color has faded to almost gray. And the distant deeply colored mountain that might have been his mother was not even visible.

Makes me appreciate every moment, every fleck of color, every drop of light, every insignificant recollection that remains with the hope that my dusk never fully dissolves.



This painting, And Dusk Dissolves, is 30″ by 48″ on canvas and is part of my current solo show, Through the Trees, at the West End Gallery in Corning, NY. It will be on display until the end of August.

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Is there not some chosen curse, some hidden thunder in the stores of heaven, red with uncommon wrath, to blast the man who owes his greatness to his country’s ruin?

– Joseph Addison, Cato, 1713

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As much as I want to, I am not going to comment on the ridiculous speech, if you want to use that word for this thing that aired on our nation’s airwaves last night. The speech and the “crisis” to which it referred were nothing more than a calculated distraction from the constant flow of emerging information that is providing more and more clarity in the investigation into the current squatter who resides in our White House.

Yesterday, a clerical error by the lawyers for Paul Manafort, the onetime campaign manager for this squatter, provided yet another puzzle piece, one that filled out the overall picture a bit more, letting us see that we may indeed be dealing with actions that are truly traitorous to this nation.

It is now well beyond anything we have dealt with at this level of our government at any point in our history. We are in uncharted territory.

Treacherous territory.

I wrote about the possibility of this type of treasonous behavior here a few weeks back in a post called Circle of Traitors. The painting at the top, which reflects the subject of that post, Dante and Virgil in the Ninth Level of Hell, is from Gustave Dore who is better known for his popular engravings.

I am not going to go on anymore this morning. I just want you to consider the actions of traitors and how they have been viewed through history. The line at the top from Joseph Addison has Cato, the noble defender of the Roman republic and its people, railing against the coming tyranny of Julius Caesar, whose actions ultimately led to the downfall of the Roman Empire.

The person who would willingly betray the interests of the people they have sworn to serve in order to fulfill their own egotistical desires does not fare well in the end.

Nor does the country or empire that allows such a creature rise to power.

Keep your eyes open, folks. The circle is coming closer.

 

 

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