Saturday, September 5, 2009

My first Saturday night

Beautiful day. Ate more bacon than anyone has a right to enjoy for breakfast, then took a walk around the gorgeous colony grounds. Got started on my new project, which is going to be about my time in the Czech Republic, and walked up to Colony Hall early because I was getting a little stir-crazy in my studio. After a wonderful dinner of chicken and pasta, sat outside with others watching the sun set, drinking wine, and talking.

But I have not felt the tranquility others seem to feel while here. It's been a HUGE roller coaster, which I think can be very productive and is not at all a bad thing. I can handle it for the time I'm here, but I wouldn't want to be like this all the time. One moment I'm up-up-up, the next I'm feeling isolated and full of anger.

I keep wanting to come up with some glib reason for this, or a way to rescue it. All I can say for the moment is that I'm living with ghosts, and the biggest one is within myself. Is that what I need to produce good work? It's worked before, that's all I know.

I wanted to end this post there, but I can't. I have to address the anger. When I'm alone and isolated at the edge of the woods, I find I'm either in rapture or furious. In particular, I get furious with people back home living their lives without my presence -- uh, what the hell? I'm the one who chose to leave for a month, didn't I? Do I expect them to drape their mirrors and live a life of quiet misery until I return on Oct. 1?

MacDowell is a shock to the system of anyone who has a lot in their head to confront. It's in the landscape, the studios, snacking on some peanut butter in the dining hall. Duck it or deal with it. I don't know which choice to make.

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