Death is one of the many themes explored in Feasts: our race against the clock, our fight to find meaning in loss, our courage to move on. In Feast of Darkness, Part I, we see the climax of the battle against Death herself, come to Geadhain to teach humanity a lesson in their insignificance. But we learn even Death has aspects and shades of herself that are more than pitch black. Death, on Geadhain or elsewhere, has those same layers. Nothing is as cut and dry as us being here one moment then gone the next; we leave legacies, echoes and energy of our having been—vibrations that travel and hum decades to centuries after we’re physically gone.
Death has probably been on most everyone’s minds this week, if you’ve been following the news that we lost two highly creative people to suicide. While Death is inescapable, there are some that reach out early into her embrace. I understand that: the need to escape, permanently. I tried to kill myself when I was very young, and it was only through fate and my own (blessed) ignorance that I survived. So I understand, intimately, it gets better. We must always remember life is the greatest gift, even when it’s miserable, though depression is such a vicious monster that we cannot see reason when under its spell. I think that creative people are even more susceptible to depression and its effects. Art, this desire to commune, can often be as incoherent as someone shouting in a foreign language. And it’s that need to connect that drives art. It’s doubly agonizing then when you don’t ‘get’ an artist, because that creative has served their heart and soul to you and you’ve shoved the plate back and said “no”.
That’s why as artists we’re told, and groomed, to have a thick skin. Because the world is full of wolves and we’re exposed and wandering the woods. I only wish that there was more kindness behind the idioms of our society. It seems that everything is predicated upon a primal doctrine of the weak being smashed by the strong, and that something as intimate and expressive as art so often falls under the hammer of the critically righteous. I know that my words have power. Do you? Do you stop to think of the woman you sneer at for butting in line? Of the customer service rep you ripped into on the phone for messing up your bill (as if it were ever their fault)?
I’m not saying that kindness would have saved either of the two creatives who left us this week—some destinies and choices are decided and set in stone. Inarguably, worldly kindness could have saved some and many more. Should we blame ourselves for every soul died to starvation, spiritual-starvation or circumstances well beyond our control? Yes, actually, that’s what being human is about. Empathy. Sympathy. Love beyond ourselves. That’s why we’re put here, to connect, to create, to nurture each other and the Earth.
Maybe if we remembered how close we truly are, and if we taught that connectivity as a heavy-handedly as we preached our other ideals, artists wouldn’t have to battle the voices of the world to simply tell us how extraordinary and delicate the thread of life can be.
All my love,