Thursday, January 29, 2009


Can I just write something and have it here for no words, or thoughts to ponder their meanings? Can I bare no truth or reason, that all I will say and create with my words is a bridge that will meet you halfway there; to wherever you are, as far as the stars in the skies, or farther, three blocks away and behind a door that tells me to stop.
I wonder what I can, without a metaphor or analogy what truth could I bare like too much skin to feel comfortable about showing. I would like to think that if my history was place in front of you that it would remain there, untouched and silent to your interest. I would like to think my past will be ignored and seen as unimportant. There are mistakes, and things I never want to say, but I seem to tell you everything knowing I won't be judged.

This bridge hasn't been tested yet, you can tip your toe upon its surface but I doubt its integrity as I hold your hand, as I hold you back. A wind will blow by, and even that seems to say not to cross, for there is a long road to nowhere, it ends and that's it. I continue telling you of its incompleteness, on how I can't finish it, and with no reply you hop over the small wall I built over its entrance and you walk. I quickly hop over and persue you to stop, that nothing could meet you at the end but the sea; a straight drop into an empty sea. But my words aren't heard, they hold no truth and actually seem to engage you to complete your journey, with me, as my body forms as an archer; you will be carrying the both of us. It is this voice I hear, it calls to me, saying. Stop. Stop stopping. Stop worrying. And let go. I realize where I am, as if woken up in the passenger seat of a car, looking at the new landscape out of context of the journey before it. Where have I been all these years, am I living another life? And soon even my questions seem to dry up and wither away as a strong wind picks up my remains. What remains is myself, on both feet, walking to the end of the world, with you, with my history fading behind us as the heat forms mirages just above the pavement.


(Cecil, The Great Escape (Expansions II), 2009)

Can we live in each moment in promise to each other? To try, to make time just stop, even if it is just for a small moment of time. To say we have stopped time is our goal, to say we have lived one tiny moment without time setting us apart as we divided the atom Einstein has been working on in his laboratory, that we had discovered new land like Columbus to American shores, and like Thoreau writing away in his cabin with words of civil disobedience we are in the same moment of our lives, where time stops just for a breath, just for one blink of the eye to reset the entire world, for the flowers to hold a bloom, for the birds to keep in flight, for the wind to be still, and the great rivers and falls to freeze as our eyes lock, looking deep within each other’s eyes, and seeing the same thing in the abyss that lies just after the iris.

(Ross, The Great Escape (Expansions II), 2009)

Sunday, January 25, 2009

The Man Who Disappeared

(Jorge Mulally's Last Words To The World We Know, 1999)

I want to share with you a piece of my history, and something very personal to me.

Jorge Mulally was an uncle of mine that I came to know during my time in the southwestern deserts of New Mexico. He was living a little more than 200 miles away in Albuquerque, New Mexico’s largest metropolis and to my sisters and I when we went to visit Uncle Mulally, was an escape from the small town world of Gallup.
Jorge often told us how we were very important to him, that no other relatives made him happier to see than us. And it was because he saw something awfully familiar in us. I never knew what he exactly meant until later on.

Jorge Mulally was born in Acapulco, Mexico to an Irish-born father, and a Mexican-born mother in 1957. His father, my grandfather’s brother, Jonny, left Ireland not long after his time in the war. Seeing his best friend be blown up by a mine just feet before him made him realize there is a world he was so close to never seeing and so a few months upon his return from the war he left to travel South America. What he had seen was a world beyond anything else he had seen before, and he fell in love with the culture and the scenery he found on the road. It was in Chile, he met a certain traveler along the way, a small Mexican woman by the name of Doris, and soon after they fell in love, married, and travelled some more before settling in Mexico, where Doris found work as a nurse, and Jonny worked as a writer for the local paper in Acapulco. A few years after Jorge was born, Doris found work in a hospital in San Diego, where Jorge would spend the longest stretch in one place before moving to the next place. They would live in San Diego for almost a decade before moving to Tucson, AZ for three years, Marfa, TX for four years, before Jorge was old enough to live on his own and so he left the nest in the summer before his parents moved to Santa Fe. When I met Jorge during his time in Albuquerque he told me of the many people he had known over the years. I asked him if he still kept in contact with any of them, and he said, only a few. People would just come and go in his life, and trying to keep in contact over the years was like keeping in contact with your childhood, it would fade to “the milk of dreams”, he would say. Every place he moved to, he never felt like he belonged, as if he was a stranger in their eyes. And though he would form deep friendships, this notion of the stranger never left him. He told me once before, he never felt pride in anything, that pride was knowing you belonged to something, and that you were happy to belong to something; feeling safe and comfortable. Jorge was always in-between two worlds, the two worlds of his parent’s ethnicities and cultures, the two worlds of his past and his present in each place he lived, his art and his writing, and his girlfriends over the years and his need for solitude.
Though I was quite young when I knew Jorge, his words are well kept in my memory, and were there more than ever when I felt alone, that his separation made me feel like I had someone; we were united in our loneliness.
In the summer of 99’, Jorge disappeared from his house in Albuquerque, leaving his things to his parents, and one single note for his disappearance. During my last visit to my parents house in Wailuku, in a box of old letters from over the years, I found a copy of that same note and I made a copy for myself. The note said,
We become individuals not by choice but by how life sees fit. Through a lifetime of alienation, abandonment, and lack of belonging we find ourselves against the groove of the crowd, and an arm-reach from those we care for in the only comfort we know, ourselves. One can travel their whole life and never find comfort until the end, when they find themselves. I am not there yet.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

In Volume

(Polaroid Family Tree (Oct. 08 - Jan. 09), 24x40inch ink-jet mounted on to wood)

The As-Of and On-Going Polaroid Family Tree will be presented for the wondering eyes of those who find themselves in the corridors of the transit space of Ontario College of Art & Design ...University next week, for more info click on the image below. Hope to see you at the opening reception.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

You'll Forget Me

(Untitled, from the Abandoned Island Series, 2007)

Push away like two plates that meet at the edge of the world only to try to destroy each other, their struggle to do so will make the Earth shake and the creatures of the land will run in fear of their end. Why must these two plates fight, what compels them to meet each other with such uncalled for aggression. Somewhere in the middle of the ocean their fight continues as giant waves form move silently beneath water, unnoticed until the shore, what creatures will meet their end?
I'll tell the truth this time, I won't hold back, you'll learn my history. You'll learn of the many nights spend thinking, endlessly, of the word, "why". You'll learn of dread, you'll know of the endless attempts to save, and the reason why I can't seem to give up. And in the end, once all is presented in front of you, I hope to be forgiven, and I hope to be forgotten. I ask of this because I fear of the jar I hold inside, that the sadness that has been kept there will spill upon your hands. You do not deserve this. And just before you forget me, give me your sadness, let me keep it with mine, and then I can disappear, like a star fading to black, or the sky falling to a black hole; these moments of singularity.
As the two plates tire, the world seems calm again. The ocean falls and the ground hums a song of peace as the creatures of the land learn to smile again, to love again, and to live again. What has made these two plates cease their struggle, what has changed within them as they rest silently on top of each other, holding each inch in hopes they can become one.
When I ask you to run away you stayed, when I told you to forget me you kept me in your arms, and when I said I'd disappear I held your hand and said,
Run Away With Me.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

It’s Not Over.

(Lavafields, 2007)

This is a story of a runner named Michael, who never ran for anyone but himself. He lived alone, and though on certain nights he’d felt most lonely, he knew, that with others he loses something, he wasn’t himself, or at least he never let the opportunity arise. If the situation wasn’t bad, if he wasn’t depressed, it was good. That was that. And so the troubles he found were left behind as he ran, his thoughts would hold on but they would never last long, maybe a night, a few days at most, and then just like the many lives in his life, they too were gone.
He had been running his whole life, and to think of those faces, those lives that were a part of his, he could no longer see their faces, their voices were mute, and their eyes were the only thing that remained as he continued to run, passed the words of his many loves. He was a hard man to know. And he was always alone, working in his mind, plotting out his next escape from his history. Where he would go next, who will he pretend to be then, as he thought of his next destination. The rest of his understanding of his move will find itself and being the adaptive person he was, he would adjust, manipulate, and find comfort, even if it is for just a little while, as he see and hears these new faces and their voices echoing like familiar voices. Michael would look up at this new friend, Charles, and cock him a look of, doiknowyou?. Of course Charles would be confused with his new friend, Michael, but he would just accept this gesture as one of Michael’s many mysteries.
The collection of mysteries Michael had was in large sum as his new friends would look at him, sometimes attracted to this aspect of their new friend, and would wonder each time Michael took a pause in his many stories of the places he’s been to, and the many people he has met. He then would catch their eyes, looking not to his face, not even the very skin that covered it, but through his eyes, and inside his mask. He ticked, and ticked, eyeing the exits, looking for a clear path but thought it may be too early, he hasn’t fully adjusted yet. Michael’s stories were in many, and were truthful to his history of travel, and the diversity in culture, but were always missing something solid to them, as if they were air, they held no substance even though it existed as proof in front of them, this man, this almost stranger, in their homes, and they worried as the mystery of Michael became too much to bare. They worried about Michael, he was too charming, too witty, and too sharp, knowing each move before it happened. And just as their mouths were taking in the air they needed to ask one question, Michael had his hands in their hands, bidding them a fair evening, and they could only feel the air in-between their fingers as a man that was once in front of them disappeared like a dream. And over the years after each of his disappearances, the people Michael knew would one day, out of the blue, wonder where that person that was brief and puzzling in their lives, a part of their life they had almost forgotten, was, where was Michael now, who was he talking to, or was he gone, in transit to the next place, leaving behind an ever-growing mystery to those he meets. Michael hasn’t stop, and he keeps going, and going. He is too busy running to ask his feet why they move, why he must leave before he can feel completely comfortable. Before a place can be called home, he hasn’t stopped. For some people were born to run, and to run their entire lives, without stopping for too long, and without anyone else, for they are the lone coyotes that find themselves in our backyards, looking for some food and warmth as we approach them with homely comfort, and before the dawn they are gone again, leaving little hint of their existence along with a few bones. They leave with that air-like existence, as if a dream, it exists but you can’t see it anymore now that you know that it couldn't have been real.

Thursday, January 15, 2009


(The Technicians, inserts from The Polaroid Family Tree, 2009)

Set forth your shadow, for we need not worry no longer.

A tired man sleeps at the footsteps of his son's house; inside is a family growing, living, and eating away their dinner, with smiles and half-mooned eyes. There could be no harm in their moment, but there is a man outside, not known to them, and will remain unknown once this man discovers his waking body on the steps of a stranger's house. He does not know of what happiness lies beyond those doors he sleeps in front of every Tuesday and Sunday, but he hopes one day he will be able to meet the faces that live just behind two inches of oak.

Holding his breast pocket, he feels the surface of a letter that has seen better days, that has seen too many days, and the old man no longer remembers what is inside this letter, nor why he appears on those steps twice a week for what has been a long time. The family within has taken notice of him, but chooses not to disturb him for this old man does not disturb them as he peacefully sleeps in his crossed arms, appearing to be waiting for something.
I have forgotten my keys, I can no longer open the door to your room, and it has been so long that your room is now a house, that there is now a family in there, and that I have pushed myself so hard and for so long, that I can't help the inertia that separates me from you. That I am sorry, of my many failures, of my many regrets, and of my many fears. I can no longer ask you for a spare, nor look underneath the welcoming rug for a way in, for I am no longer welcomed, and the mistaken man who thought he was a father is no longer, that a stranger now walks in his shoes, and clothes, posing as phantom. I ask nothing, and yet I am here, in front of your door, waiting for something, something not even I know exist.
I am here, right now, and everyday for you to banish me. And to forget who I wasn't, before you forget who I am.

Monday, January 12, 2009

What We Cannot Forge

(Melanie and Faye, The Great Escape, 2008)

Lies tell the truth about someone. An escape artist is not running but hiding. And the writer does not create a world but relives his or hers through different eyes.
Our past will soon forget us; that the memories we cherish should be remembered, keeping mementos, or writing, and other forms of documentation for the good times should never be forgotten. For harder times, there may only be hope in our past for our future. That all is not lost, and we have a mountain half-climbed to see the top and admire the view of the world until we decide to find what we had left behind. To see the world in different eyes; eyes that have seen the world once over, and now sees something familiar but with new context. Give a reason for smiling, give a chance to new and renew. Let tired legs feel their strength exceed their expectation as you move across the countryside, faster, each step marking your existence, as you slowly fade to nothing. And what have you, what have you left for your memory to others? What can be said once all is gone, that you lived? Perhaps, that you were here? And maybe, that never mattered because you lived in your eyes, and have seen a world twice, for those who have known you carry you now on their shoulders as they climb, or climbed that mountain to see the world, and are carrying you down with them as others will do for them once they are gone, but never completely forgotten.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

God, I'm Lonely (again)

(God, I'm Lonely, Reminiscence, 30x40, 2008)
I tend to follow in the foot steps of my past and as my feet find themselves fitting within my past impressions in the mud, I discover my feet used to be bigger.
What has happened; to all the strength I used to have, has it faded like the black of my hair as it falls or turns white, or have I forgot who I once was. There could be no mistake I reassure myself, that I had lost something from all of my travels, oh the years escape as I look upon my only memory; a series of photo albums without dates or locations, just the faces of my past and the places I once seen with different eyes. I look at these landscapes and think of the person just like me but very much different, seeing all of this, and I think of what he might of thought at that moment, was he sad when the skies were overcast and the sea was dead, was he humble when the light fell upon a small part of the forest for just a moment long enough for his camera to capture? I can no longer remember, I can no longer see myself there in these places with these faces. They exist without me, like their lives before me, and like their lives after me. And like a moth, I fly to the light, each push of my wings takes a grain of dust from my memory as the places I have seen escape me, falling to the ground, and soon I forget where I came from as I continue to fly to this beautiful thing as I fall apart to reach it.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Only As Strong As You Let Me Be

(Melanie and Faye Just Before a Storm, October 27th, 2008)

Nimble toes, narrow fingers, brittle like grains of wheat in the harvest; I'll fall to the ground, you'll hear a crash, thunder for your ears only, and you'll know, and I'll know, it was all meant to be.
A mistake here and there will remind us that this is all real. I talk to my plants when I water them, I whisper words of growth and warmth as they look over to see there is winter just as far as the thickness of my windows. They long for summer, and I look sad in their eyes, that I too wait for summer to bloom as I walk off to my reading corner. I can hear construction outside, and I return to the book I'm reading. It must be freezing out there, I wonder if they get paid extra in winter? I learn of a boy's first memory and then realize that those construction workers must have warm homes waiting them, that they all have wives that stay home just for them, and have a hot meal waiting for them. They come home and coats on the living room couch, then kick their boots before the kitchen, and kiss their wives just before sitting down at the table. You can see their tired eyes open up to the steam rising from a feast before belly, and their mouths half-open, waiting for their dearest. The memory of the boy was of a balloon he once had, how he tied a ring to the end of the string holding the balloon, and how he tried to send it to an angel as he let it go, high and higher into the sky. And at the time he wasn't sure what would happen as it went up higher until he could no longer see it as his winking eyes battles the brightness of the sun. The clouds would mark the farewell of this balloon to his master as the balloon disappeared from his eyes and appeared in his dreams. Construction workers always do the dishes once they are close-to-food, stuffed, and always refused help as they are always offered help; this is the way it has to be thinks these hard day workers with tiny dishes in their large hands. It has been a good day as they throw their work clothes to the ground and get in bed with their wives, they still hold each other after all these years. The balloon passes through a sea of clouds and just before it leaves the surface a hand reaches out and stopped its ascend. They tell each other they love each other and the night seems to float between dreams. The hand pulls the balloon closer to see what is at the end. The ring is found and is pulled with one touch. How did this ring stay on for such a long distance? And angels fill the dreams of a boy who grows up to be a construction worker as he continues to dream of an angel that wears his ring, holding her closer and closer and dreams on.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Till The Bitter End

(Untitled Cityscape, 2008)

I won't let go of the sand falling between my fingers. I'll carry this sand in fistfuls for as long as I could. I'll run like the river, hands still holding on, I'll walk through crowds, bump into strangers, and j-walk across traffic, I'll sleep at night, holding on to everything and struggling to keep every grain safe. Like coffee in open cups on a bumping road, like the steam on mirrors after a shower, everything will eventual fade away. But in a world of what-if, and the possibilities this feeling, of sand in my hands will remain, until I fall, until the glass-bottom boat cracks and the once admired sea life rushs in with the flood and eats us alive. I can no longer feel a fist, nor the gaps between my fingers as my hands feel as it whole, as one, as I reflect on the time that has passed. I am at a foothill looking over a mountain, I am an ant to the world outside of his colony, with steps, with breathes away from the end of possibilities and the beginning of realization. And the sand can be or not be in my opening hands as I drop everything, the contains of my hands, the structure of my life as I have known it, the ideas I had, the believes I lived by, until everything is left just one step away from where I am presently standing as I look forwards, seeing nothing I have known as I leave this place behind. May it forget me as I forget of once was; along the way, along the journey.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Let It Go

My hands are dirty. Clean but dirty. I left my coat on the floor, my shoes halfway beyond the non-shoe area of my apartment, and my hair is still moist from the rain. My glasses are dry and my tongue can still taste the words. Let It Go. Let It Go. (repeat for eternity). I feel like I wanted to be sad, it’s easier this way, feeling sad feels good. I sometimes look for sadness only for the feeling. Its like the smell of gasoline, it’s so different from any other smell your nose is used to that you wanted to take in more but you also know it’s not good for you. But you still feel like smelling it. And when there isn’t happiness you crave whatever you could get that is different from the norm.
The rain was perfect, the moment was perfect, but I felt this wave building over the perfect ride, that thrill vibrating beneath my feet as the board glides over rushing water, and then it becomes too much, it first shallows you with its shadow and just before you look back you feel like the ground of a stampede, and just like that you are thrown a million miles into nothing. I tried to escape that walk in eternity; those two minutes felt like an hour, and that hour felt like a day, then week, then month, and then I saw my entire life, as I started walking backwards, you were still walking forwards. The raindrops started to float from the ground in slow motion, and I said goodbye, our orbits were changing, the sound of our feet splashing into the water just before hitting the ground. I was leaving you, and you were leaving me, in slow motion. I reached out, and my hand searched, blindly without my eyes, for your mitten forgot to give back to you, but you were gone now, and so my eyes weren’t lying I couldn’t see you anymore. I started running and my legs, although going backwards, ran perfectly going backwards and without control my arms started to complement my leg movement as I ran faster and faster, not stopping, not thinking, faster and faster. The rain surrounded my body in a pool of still, not frozen, water as I broke the sound barrier; I was faster than I had ever thought I could be. I had never met the end of my speed, but my legs were running as fast as they could, and then a thought came into my mind. I saw you, running too, but in forwards motion, passed the person you were with, and you were so fast he didn’t have the time to react as he turned his head in slow motion to where you used to be. You left an outline in water as your speed ripped through the water instantanously. Slowly that rain water will fall to the ground and by then, the moment he hears it you will be halfway around the world.
I wasn’t sad, and though I wanted to feel sad, I couldn’t, you didn’t let me, you were the only one to make me feel happy in a long time. And then we ran, opposite of each other. I didn’t know if you would run passed me, when we eventually met, and I wondered if you would stop when you knew I was close. I had a great distance to run, and so did you. I wondered if I would meet you halfway around the world, and then I thought of where halfway must’ve been…maybe Israel, or somewhere around there. I imagined running so fast that the world would go backwards in time, and by the time I made it to Israel and the surrounding areas, I would see the birth of man, but as soon as I saw that I would see Adam and Eve instantly, and everything would flash in front of me and everything would return to the present as you neared me. My feet grew lighter and lighter until the earth beneath them didn’t exist, I was floating in space, and as the future took over my sight of the world from a far I saw the sun grace you with a celestial silhouette. There you were, the fastest thing ever, as we got closer and closer, time was so slow at that moment that everything sounded like the waves crashing from beneath the surface. I could smell you, so close, and then I could see a highlight of the right side of your face as the sun moved across your body, giving me piece by piece so I could see you in the most beautiful light. I saw your feet, they were on fire, and I then looked down at my feet, and they too, were on fire, and then I returned my eyes to your feet and saw that you were fine, and I felt fine and we were really fast, and it felt amazing. I kicked everything my legs had, and realized I wasn’t going my fastest, and I worried for a moment, that I would become faster than you, and that you weren’t my soul mate found in speed, but the closest thing to it. And just before I could complete that thought, for a split second you stopped. And just as sudden as you stopped you started to back up and then ran even faster than my eyes in slow-motion could see, and realized I shouldn’t have ever doubted you. My legs blew up in a blaze when I saw you running faster than me, and then I started up for speed again, trying to find the last ounce I had left. It happened so soon I can’t remember what happened first. I just saw your face, it was the most beautiful expression I had ever seen a human do in my entire life, you froze for moment, your mouth open in shock and you glassy eyes transformed into the saddest and caring eyes I have ever seen, and then your whole body locked into place from the power of expression. Everywhere I could see was blood and fire, the bones in my legs were shattering in every place possible, and I didn’t feel pain, I was taken by your face, I was being carried away with you, in a new body. I was the particles of light and stone, being held like a baby in your arms. And just before I could see you stop I blinked by accident, and I am still in that very slow blink, wishing, hoping you are there before I open my eyes, waiting for me, with a million miles of dust instantly catching up to you. But I haven’t opened my eyes yet, I’m afraid you’re no longer there. And I open and see.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Let's Just Say...

Slowly goes progress to something I'm still not quite sure is...
(View From My Window, December 22nd 2008)

(Frozen Fields of the Grange, December 27th 2008)

(A Small Collection of Deflated Balloons on the Wire, December 27th 2008)

(Katie in What Appears To Be a Jungle, December 27th, 2008)

(Used Christmas Tree Covering Entrance, December 27th 2008)