Wednesday, 2 January 2008

Shamanic Dismemberment

Back in the bosom of the corporate world, shiny and bright in a new year.
My head , however, in a different space altogether.
I'm putting this down here mostly for my own purposes, in case I begin to doubt that I have actually undergone a shamanic dismemberment.

Lying in the basement of a hospital with a suitcase, semi-conscious. Being found by a hospital orderly and admitted.
For days, lying in the hospital bed ,with the guard rails up, in my own blood and my own waste products.
The bizarre products of my dying brain: a panoramic replay of my life thus far, visions of people living and dead,a disorientation not only of time-space but of the senses, a kind of synesthesia.
For days being unable to walk or hold a cup.
The inside of the psychiatric wing of the hospital.
Sleeping on the actual pavements of Hillbrow, in daylight and at night.
Sleeping on somebody's front lawn where I was dumped after being raped.
Having the pitiful few contents of my suitcase which were worth anything stolen from me.
Sleeping in some good stranger's house, for a few hours.
Sleeping on a hard bench in a police station.
Queuing for bread and soup at the Salvation Army. Scrubbing floors and washing dishes for my keep.
What it feels like to be suddenly alone, cut off from family and friends alike.
What it feels like to be dying.
What this city looks like from underneath.
What it feels like to be raped.
What it feels like to be threatened with a gun.
What it feels like to have no home.
Realising that there is great violence and horror in people's dealings one with another.
Realising that there are good kind people in this world.
Finding the man who is my life partner today at this homeless shelter.

PS Some great art including the post-header, here