Father/Brick Wall/Father/Brick Wall
My friend Teresa used to say that the difference between living in Denver and living in New York City was that in Denver if you felt like hitting your head against a brick wall, you'd go outside, take a walk and get over it. "In New York," she'd say " if you feel like hitting your head against a brick wall, you go outside; and there is some poor bastard hitting his head against a brick wall." Her theory was that the population of NYC was so dense that there were an infinite amount of things happening at once, so one of them happening outside was sure to mirror what was happening inside.
It's rather like being pregnant and suddenly noticing all the other pregnant woman in the world that you didn't see before. Or, conversely, getting a divorce and suddenly being acutely aware of all the happy couples in the world that one never noticed before.
But there is, it seems to me, some larger relationship between what we see and what we feel. I do not think it is all volitional. I don't think it is in our hands alone. I know that we bring a perceptual grid to the world, like a filter, that is colored by our history, and which allows us to see some things and not see others. Yes, that does happen, and we do, but that is not what I am talking about here.
As I mentioned in my first blog entry, my father died recently. Our relationship had been complicated. Suddenly I keep seeing/hearing/noticing things about fathers and daughters. Television shows about fathers and daughters. Books. Magazine articles. Paintings of fathers and daughters. Songs. Poems. People. If I tell you it feels like an image deluge since his death in December, I would only be approximating its impact.
Whatever "it" is.
To use the image I began with today, it is as though I went outside and saw a dozen people banging their heads on brick walls.
I've spoken about images on this blog before. I am coming to sense that the universe, or God, is actively presenting us with images, pushing at the doors of our senses and telling us to work with something, or to resolve something. There is, it seems to me, an Intentionality of Image.