The way I see it, we're all a little bit insane, somewhat strange. Remember childhood and the psychedelic summers, unscripted, crescendos of heat swollen ecstasy, with warm oranges and citrus fruits rinsing your soft palate with their fragrant juices, sylph bodies bare and browned, unbuttoned sundresses, and sea salt in uncombed tresses. When classrooms couldn't keep you, and you were young, drunk from the sun.
If growing up means you must put to death impulsiveness to bear instead these strangled skins of sensibility, then pray, let us be creatures of youth till eternity! None that is nourishment for the soul is without insanity. Unadulterated, infinite love is not sensible, risks are not sure nor steadfast, forgiveness grits against instinct, freedom begs of you to abandon approval and inhibitions, peace needs your untarnished tolerance.
Some say I'm strange. I like grass stains on my knees and moist mud marbled on my feet. I like laying undraped and naked; I don't often wear make-up. I like waking up where no one knows my name, and wandering on whimsies, wayward as the wind. I do not fancy phones. I grow my mane, the tips hit against my hip. I like being caught in cloudbursts, and devouring my desert before dining on the main course. I do not conceive impartial misery for money to be an honorable, even handed trade. I like the screech and slap of screen doors adjoined to sun porches; the dusk chorus of crickets and cicadas. I believe in the supernatural, in God, the Holy Spirit, I believe in redemption, salvation, in the sanctuary of nature. I made the land my father, the sea my mother, and humanity my family.
"You're insane!", that's what they all say about me, what they chant in cue to all my idiosyncrasies, my impulsive, untamed soul: you're insane, you're insane, you're insane, and then, "you'll be killed!". I should only hope. For must I die, let it be done while I wander, while there is rejuvenating change, and tides that turn, till they lower my bones into the belly of the earth.
The years, they spin cobwebs across our souls, and thus, we must faithfully take our feathered little brushes, our cleaning cloths, and dust them off. Oh, look at what you've left in the little labyrinths lipped with lost memories!
We sat at Saturday supper, the late sun dismounting from its empyrean throne, with the neighbor's baby, warm body bobbing in my lap, as she pinched peeled potatoes from my plate, her velvety flesh pressed into my lissom limbs, limpid and sticky with humidity, her breath a silky swell. She is sweetly strange and spirited, an infantile nymph at two, still snug from the snares of society's soul suppressants, and demons of doubt do not disturb her dreams. The heart is a knowing creature and she knows only the harmony it hums.
And once, when we didn't yet know how to keep the heart quiet, we let it lead us leaping free through the willows and whirlpools of our imaginative impulses. They say, when we grow, we must ripen with reasoning, be wed with sensibility, slaughter all insanity, as if to suggest we should be simple spectators, that there is shame in your dreaming. No!
Let us make love our religion and insanity our hymn, let us be christened with the clarity of our intimate chimeras, and lionhearted living. Be, breathe, like when you've almost woken, your unconscious womb still dewy with dreams, your mind nourishing the morning glories and golden poppies of thought that disintegrate into a haze that hasn't yet had a drift of disdain. Let the fire flourish, let vigor and vivaciousness spill from your lips, reach even your fingertips, and darling, if you wish, be strange, be outlandish.
Many heartfelt thanks to Alison Scarpulla - the photographer behind the marvelous visuals featured in this entry - for giving me permission to showcase her photographs here and for graciously sending them to me, in all their loveliness and in larger formats. I have always admired her impeccable ambiguity and been enchanted by the magic that happens between her vision and lens. You view more of her photographs here or purchase prints at her Etsy Shop.
Title Quote: Henry David Thoreau
Photo Credits: Alison Scarpulla