Friday, 26 June 2009

Black dogs

Winston Churchill called his bouts of depression "Black dog". I had many black dogs and the amazing thing about them was the silver lining, the light at the end of the tunnel, the cosmic sensation of joy you experienced while going through the darkest time. I remember very vividly a few: a night sitting on the boulders in Genova with my then best friend smelling sea air and an incredible cold breeeze, feeling the shivering on my body as an electric energy running through me; discovering W.G. Sebald at a time when I was exploring the concept of exile and finding that he had nailed it to an extraordinary level of accuracy. In my recent dark days I came across Dan Eldon and his illustrated journals and through the intensity of his short young life I felt almost purified. He used to say that the journey was the destination and I've learned recently what that really means in terms of giving up expectation and witholding judgement. I got in touch with his mother and learned yet another lesson about pain and joy and strength. I don't have heroes in my life because my search pushes me forward all the time, but I have had magical encounters, Dan was one, Christina was another.

1 comment:

Sage said...

I don't think I have heroes either--heroes are up on pedestal and tend to get knocked down when we learn of their humanity. Companions and mentors, however, are valuable.