Grab bag! A comic for you – and my heart – and my threshold for Art.

So I went to Daniel MacIvor’s play House on Thursday, with my very literal-minded best friend from Elsewhere, and I went to The PGK Project at Movement at the Mills on Friday, dragging along my roommate, also from Elsewhere, who was like, “…Oh. We’re going to see a dance show?” (just imagine the tone)

I really enjoyed both performances! And not just because they were relatively short and I have no attention span! Sonia was also at The PGK Project, so maybe she’ll write more about it specifically, but it was beautiful. So was House, though in a quite different way. And they were both – what was the word I used? Oh, right. I described them as both being “on the more palatable end of the spectrum.” The spectrum being the range of bizarre Art that I’ve attended, participated in, studied, or encountered in some way since coming here.

Guys, I’m different than I was. I don’t know how the kid who applied four years ago would have felt about these shows this weekend; for sure, she had a different spectrum than me. Bestie, who wishes she were less literal-minded, but alas, (I still love her!) spent the better part of House and before and after looking askance at me and going, “What???” and I was all, “What?” because it was so… normal. To me. And she couldn’t “get” it – the experience-don’t-analyze thing – until she’d read the program (which we received after), at which point she went, “Well, if I had known that beforehand!!” And I was like, “But that’s the…point.” Is it? Well, I don’t know, but for sure I go into spaces more open-minded than I did, for all I still whine that we don’t do anything “normal” or “happy” or “fun.”

This permeates my non-theatre life, too – a friend pointed it out last spring, when I wrote about some of the things we talk a lot about here (the value of half-formed thoughts! being open to having your mind changed! generosity of spirit in the sharing of ourselves!). I guess it comes through even when I’m talking about, say, TV – I get into these long, involved conversations that wouldn’t happen if not for this sense of listening and responding, of not being convinced of your own right-ness, not just waiting for your turn to speak.

Not that the journey is done, but, especially if you’re graduating in May 2012, think of what you were like in DR100. Think of what some of your peers were like. I was terrified of you. Are you stiller/more measured/more open today, or am I braver? Maybe both? I hope both. Because of how we talk! Here! Around! THANKS, SCHOOL. I like you. Have another poem about the heart:

Another Poem About The Heart

When the floor drops out, as it has now,
you cannot hear the squirrel on the wire
outside your window, the wheels spinning
on the road below. You want only pity
and are presented with the unbelievable
effrontery of a world that moves on.
But wait: this is not the person you are.
You’re the kind of person who
sits in dark theaters crying at the collarbones
that curve across the dancers’ chests,
at the proof of a perfection they represent;
a person who goes out walking in a four-day drizzle,
sees a pot of geraniums and is seized, overcome
by how they can bring so much (what else
can you call it?) joy. You love the world,
are sure, at least, that you have. But be truthful:
you only love freely things that have nothing
to do with you. You’re like a matchstick house:
intricately constructed but flimsy and hollow inside.
You’re a house in love with the trees beside you -
able to look at them all day, aware of how faithful they are -
but unable to forgive that they’d lie down
leaving you exposed and alone in a large enough storm.

~ Jenn Habel

And thirdly, for fun, an xkcd comic I’ve had in mind since a recent class of ours:

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