Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Personification of Leaves

I find myself lying in bed with a bad back/right arm combo. As I don't own a laptop I have dragged my bed across the floor towards my desktop and have pulled my keyboard out to full extension so that I can type whilst sitting in bed. This has suddenly become a very dark day (AGAIN). I have no idea what is going on right now only that I appear to be struggling with everything, which is ridiculous as I don't really have pressures in life at the moment. It just go to show you that you can't escape yourself. 

Me with plants painted by Piers Ottey 2004
Whilst laying in bed and writing in all of my diaries something extraordinary manifests in my thoughts - a realisation: I am my leaves, the leaves are me. Every leafscape is not only a portrayal of a dystopian ecology, every one of them is also a reflection of me. Stuck on the margin on the paper, unable to claim their space, full of life or slowly decaying, spiky or soft, they are all facets me. 

I mentioned my dreams of giant leaves and tree trunks in my last post. When reflecting on my plant-based dreams, one in particular still plays on my mind. It must have been dreamt back in 2012 when I was still living in Kew. In it I found my old bedroom in a house of many houses. It was covered in dust, and shafts of life erupted from the furniture and climbed towards the shuttered window. Disrupted layers of dust whirled around the stagnant, stratified air. Toys I had forgotten ever owning were left out, half drunk cups of tea, university papers, school journals - you name it, everything was inside this hexagonal room. The room held all the items every one of my rooms has ever held, it was a capsule of my space and identity. Stunned I had come across such treasure my eyes went back to the thing they noticed first - the bed, from out which grew a coffee tree. It was Caroline and she was in bloom, but her flowers were that of a Gardenia- big, white and showy. Her roots covered the bed and her branches, which were full of singing, electric green birds, spread out like an awning in their desperate search for light. She was incredibly stunted but able to function nonetheless and the entire room had developed its own ecosystem.


On remembering this dream I remember all the others I had during that year of trees growing in houses and churches, halls, bedrooms, cellars and attics. There were dozens of them, all different species and all dwarfed by their environment. I now see a theme developing... took a while for me to remember and piece it together, but the brain is an amazing muscle that always requires time (and space). So with that in mind I am left feeling rather stunned and a teeny bit sad, trying to work out what I need to do in order to move away from the margin and into that white space. That is, if I want to. I think I do, but the subconscious is a strange thing and maybe, just maybe there is something inside of me that prefers the margin. 

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