Sunday, April 4, 2010

Different Masks




The great grey beast of July had eaten Matthew Tait alive -


The opening stanza of Barker's The Thief of Always, and oh - how apt they are for these dreary, rain sodden days. Winter is romantic, don't get me wrong. It inspires. It has creative, driving force, lent strength by a harried wind. But after a while the imagination stirs, and longs for a sweeter, hotter light where the mind's eye can wander out in the open -

Such thoughts were with me today as I sat in a classroom, ensconced in the world of computers. Even these machines can inspire - but there is something cold about them: an aura of numbers that bridge a spectrum filled with plastic and encumbered by weight.

If I love anything about humanity, it's that yearning of the creative mind. It wants to unshackle; become free from restraint and bondage. Maybe even lent spirit. The flesh does that: it's like a kind of prison sometimes, and the main reason I have turned to writing and books is a way to persuade my mind that it will wander there one day. Not yet - but soon. Be patient. I think Clive barker summed it up more precisely, almost penning word for word how I feel on days like today:  

He'd always been a solitary child, as much through choice as circumstance, happiest when he could unshackle his imagination and let it wander. It took little to get such journeys started. Looking back, it seemed he'd spent half his school days gazing out of some window, transported by a line of poetry whose meaning he couldn't quite unearth, or the sound of someone singing in a different classroom, into a world more pungent and remote than the one he knew. A world whose scents were carried to his nostrils by winds mysteriously warm in a chill July; whose creatures paid him homage on certain nights at the foot of his bed, and whose people conspired with him in sleep -

Clive Barker. Writer. Showman. 

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