I can still remember my grade for a piece of art assigned to me in the third grade. “Draw a picture of a horse using stick figures…Stick figures”, my teacher said…easy, I thought. I got an “F”.
Apparently I wasn’t supposed to show some parts of the horse. In my defense I pleaded that it was a stallion and a stallion, well you know what a stallion has.
My teacher, Miss whatever the hell her name was, got all pink and red just talking about it.
I got all red and angry just thinking about it. I got all red and angry because I was embarrassed.
I still get angry but not because she embarrassed me. I still get angry because she castrated me…not my manhood…no she castrated my creativity
I wonder about what may have been. I wonder what may have been had she not ripped the soul from my creative heart.
I am reminded of the old saying, “Kilroy was here” and the picture of his face peeping over a wall…all you can see is the top of his head, his eyes, his nose, his ears and his hands.
Some people saw Kilroy as someone or something watching them. They saw someone keeping track of what they were doing. I have a different take on Kilroy.
I see Kilroy as a timid soul trying to break free of the imaginary shackles that bound him and kept him from creating the person he wanted to be. I saw me.
Now, in the latter part of my life, the so called golden years, I still see that timid soul. I see a man wary of taking the steps that could free him. I see a man wary of those steps because he doesn’t yet relish the freedom of creation more than he fears the humiliation of failure.
My mind radiates a picture of my inner strength beginning to form as imaginary oils flow across a crumpled piece of canvas as if a bucket of paint were spilled. The oils flow slowly, picking the perfect bumps and crevices of the canvas to form the realities of my life.
A luscious green pasture filled with vibrant flowers appears. On the far edge of the pasture in the shadows of a giant oak tree stands a castrated stallion. The golden rays of the sun reflect from his sleek ebony body.
The stallion lifts his head and his flaring nostrils take in the smells of life. His shining black eyes glisten with the desire to sample the truth of daring. His heart begs for the courage to walk among those flowers on his own terms.
The giant oak’s gnarly branches are his haven. Its leaves are his blanket of warmth. He is protected from whatever snakes are hidden among the flowers. He snorts, he paws the earth, he charges the flowers, but he has yet to taste the flowers because his fear of the snake is too great.
The oil continues to flow. The sun edges closer to the earth. Shadows become part of the oils. The stallion lifts his head and once again, the smell of the flowers beckons him. He paws the ground. He knows the oil is beginning to dry.