Friday, January 23, 2009

foi response from Gregory Holt (NH)

my mom brought me miso soup, and i went home, slept some, and returned
to philadelphia on 11 hours of busses. two hours wandering the
freezing fucking streets of new york, warming up periodically in metro
entrances. hmm. for me, it was-- less. in most ways. less everything.
less isolating, less emotional, less discovery. half hearted. the room
was too small and everything i did felt truncated. i couldn't work up
any real speed, any real hysteria, any real devotion. just boredom;
totally aggravating and constant. except movement could always
undercut anything i was thinking- if i was moving, everything felt
almost 'normal', almost familiar, but just for the first i guess
twenty hours or so, and after that something shifted and my body
became ___, it became one thing, all of it, at once. what i did then
was familiar but different, without localizable origin, a
decentralized unity. i connected to my breath as this thing which
could hold my mind and body away from flipping out about losing all
(most) other landmarks. i counted breaths into the thousands, and they
stayed slow and deep even when moving relatively rapidly around.

i was so ready to quit. i was like what's the point?!?! i could tell
everyone that it was over. i could fake an internet problem and cut
the streaming and just stop. i have no idea where hte commitment to
continue came from, as i had no grounding of who or what i could be
reaching- i certainly wasn't sure even i myself was benefiting in any
way. what saw me through was probably pure arrogant sheer
self-conception as someone who completes his commitments, who finishes
what he starts.

i was definitely hallucinating a good chunk of the early morning,
seeing potted plants all around me and thinking i was sitting in a
large comfortable chair etc etc.

and at the end 'that was it?' was there a great revelation? catharsis?
expansion of dimension of being? i was left with a sense of
uncertainty- did it 'work'? did i fail because i think i passed out
for some blank amount of time during the first night, because i didn't
exhaust myself athletically, because if i went to the window i could
tell if it was daylight or not and so refused to totally surrender
marking time, because i didn't meditate very much about how to learn
political truths from my body?

but then i briefly looked in on some of the west coast dancers- one
had a chair which she was pushing around listlessly with her feet, one
was walking slowly across the back of an empty room, one was just
lightly hugging himself and rocking. not in agony or insanity or pain,
just sort of shifting weight. could have been for hours. and i was
filled with so much compassion, so much empathy, so much awe for the
beauty of some kind of spirit which cannot be contained, which is so
much more powerful than our ability to rationally know or be certain
even that it was there. may the spirit we have shared fill our work.


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