Wednesday, June 6, 2007

your paradise

I'm sorry to disappoint anyone looking for an illustration for this subject, but I'm abstaining from this topic due to it's crappiness.

It's the 'your' that does it. Just 'paradise' would have left enough open (Bosch's 'garden of earthly delights' but with robots!), but the 'your' makes it personal. My first reaction was to the cheesiness of it. The second was how simplistic it was. It ticked me off! How many of us really have only one vision of our paradise? And if we have more than one, can any one be the most important to warrant a drawing?

Me? I've got dozens; more recently since I'm trying to be more Taoist in my life. I have mini-paradises all through my life. I'd enjoy revisiting them all and all of them are too important to trap ineptly in a drawing. So, instead of a drawing, you get lots of words:

Gerry Dyer's lake house in the early 80's. Kids, canoes, swimming, playing jellyroll hopscotch in the dirt road and going to sleep on the screened in porch sunburned and happy.

Standing in the driving mist on the sea cliffs on the peninsula on the Coast Guard base on Kodiak Island, Alaska. The smell of the ocean and the sound of gulls in the fog and nobody else around.

Sitting in the door of a USCG HH-3f Pelican helicopter as a flight mechanic. Watching the Alaskan landscape speed by, swelled with the pride of knowledge and experience, ready for anything.

Pulling an all-nighter in the printmaking department at the Maine College of Art. Watching the sun come up over Casco Bay while using a lever press from the 19th century.

Every inch of The Flow mountain bike trail on that rare day when I'm completely dialed-in. Each turn melding to the next as though I'm on rails; smooth as silk, brave as a lion.

My fiance and I shoveling the driveway of our new rural house at midnight during the Valentine's Day Blizzard. Seeing her little ruddy face smiling from inside her parka as snow hisses on my hood.

My fiance's 6 year old cousin latching onto me at a family get-together and 'forcing' me to play strange, rule-less 6 year old games. The joy is in going with the flow and not trying to impose order.

Waking up at 6am on a Saturday, doing my warm-ups outside amid our trees and flowers, then crawling back into bed with my fiance. She stirs at my touch and rolls over to smile at me...

So. That's only a sampling of my 'paradises'. Kurt Vonnegut, Jr, once said that there was one thing that people don't say enough: "If this isn't good, I don't know what is!". I try to say it as often as I can.

Drawing soon, I promise. If not an IF, then something else I've been working on.



Swinebread said...

There's lots a hell's, so why not lots of Heavens?

Arkonbey said...


I just did some research and apparently the third part of Dante's Divine Comedy talked about paradise with nine spheres.

Funny how the 'inferno' and its circles of hell became the famous bit while 'paradiso' and the spheres of heaven were forgotten.