Wednesday, April 7, 2010

sorting papers


"Please begin each workshop by telling yourself that dance isn't something remote from your day-to-day lives - let that be your starting point."
Kazuo Ohno - my butoh mentor Momo's sensei

My sister and I no longer live in the city we grew up in and so a few times a year we get a chance to see one another at our childhood home where my dad still lives. My parents lived through the depression and tend to be 'collectors' - especially my dad. My dad was an engineer, and a draughtsman, and most recently before he retired he taught draughting (Canadian spelling of the American 'drafting') at a high school. Over the years he collected reams of drawings - both his own and also those of his students. This was the era before computer graphics, so each rendering was done by hand with such meticulous measuring and precision....

Today was a stormy, windy day and my dance practice was indoors, capturing this shared moment of life with my sister - going through what seemed like endless boxes of drawings and recycling them. As my dad is elderly, he is no longer able to make decisions such as this - what to keep and what to let go of...

Of course this process of sorting through our dad's stuff brought up for us - what in OUR lives are we holding onto and for what purpose? How much stuff do we have stored away in boxes in our cupboards and attics? Just as we are un-cluttering and clearing space in my dad's life for his ultimate letting go, perhaps we too, have some letting go to do in our lives, so that we too can feel less burdened by our possessions?

Feeling so grateful to have my sister in my life to share these moments with, to support one another at times like this that can be challenging... todays dance was a dance of everyday life...

"There are many ways to perish, or to flourish.

How old pain, for example, can stall us at the
threshold of function.

Memory: a golden bowl, or a basement without light...

Some memories I would give anything to forget.
Others I would not give up upon the point of
death, they are the bright hawks of my life."

Mary Oliver - from "Evidence"

Thank you for viewing, Lee

There is a film in the black space below:
video
Music: Philip Glass
View my butoh mentor's inspiring blog here: Maureen 'Momo' Freehill

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