Saturday, March 26, 2011

Some Kind of Pep Talk

Well, I'm going to run along with this post while I think of a title for it, I'm not exactly sure where to begin with it. I guess it's been about eight or ten days since I've posted to the Operation, lets just say that it has not been my intent to neglect, but the "real-life" situations that I have been experiencing have been a little more than discouraging. And, I know that people of todays time do not care anything about hearing of one's hardships, or struggles, about no matter how much good they want to do or how hard they work and position themselves they just can not seem to get some traction in the world. Hell, I don't even like writing about it; but, my loyalty to persistence demands it, someone out there is listening...

For as much as I try to do right, it seems that I am rewarded with wrong, and my forward progress slides down a slope that takes me further away from my objectives. I often imagine an angel, just swooping down, picking me up and setting me directly on top of my goal. How great would that be? I'll bet that's the refreshment of a winning lottery ticket for those few who are blessed in such a way, or a family trying to have children for years and years then finally she or he is there.
When I rediscovered art at Texas State University in the year 2000, in a basic drawing class, I was in a social pit of despair. I was younger, my mid 20's, and things were comfortable enough to attend a four year college but I was far out of place socially. I didn't fit in with anyone, really, except a few rural folks that I knew who were attending the same school, from the same hometown as me, but a full load of college courses, to keep my financial aid, and 40 hrs a week working, so I could survive, left me with little time at all for them. So, more or less, I was alone. I did a lot of soul searching in this time, I had done a lot of soul searching before my descision to go to college, so when I was at my spiritual low God answered my cries for help with charcoal and graphite, and a semester later, with tubes of paint and some brushes, as were required for the course of color theory.

Things picked up from there. I knew after a year or so that what I was onto was more powerful than anything imaginable. That, in fact, I was involved in the true final frontier, that place as a boy I considered exploring on excursions into the wild countryside, on missions to find new places to go fishing, which amassed mostly to nearby rivers and distant stock tanks on my uncle's Uvalde County farm. Art had been around my whole life. I consider it one of the most consistent things in my life, less God and regular food and water, with the exception of my late teens, when after high school I swore it off, even at the request of many who urged me to continue, declaring, "All I'll ever do with art is struggle at life, and will never have any money or comfort". I remember saying it, and I was right (so far), one of the reasons why I often consider it as a curse. But, in my young adolescence, I could not foresee the nature and importance of it.

Since my studies at the University I have thought rarely about anything but art and it's massive expanse, it's possibilties, the imagination. Over the last ten years I've discovered, taken apart, and reassembled the whys and how to's of why it is that I must find a way to do this, to keep my head up, keep my hands busy, keep my feet and nose on the trail, render this into the realm of reality. At this point I am having such a terribe time at just keeping up with getting myself in the game. I have spent six of the last nine months working to upgrade my conditions, only to face a situation where the rural work I've been doing, and the man I've been doing it for refuses to treat me with any dignity and pay for my wages worked... I can't even get paid! And my last two hundred dollars will leave my bank and go to direct student loans for the time I spent there. At this time my heart is heavey, I feel oppressed, and I'm losing the will to keep up with this, even though the marrow of my bones shutters at the thought, the last reminencse of my existence on this earth says, "You are too great at this to quit, what you have to deliver will stand forever!"
My bones are right. This is my heart and my happiness at stake. This is what I was placed into the earth to accomplish. All of this said in the face of a lifetime of rural poverty, with no visible way out, except through the paint and brushes that is all that I have, that, and these words.

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