PretyImperfction











{January 30, 2017}   Suspended Beauty – 2015

Its strange the things that come to mind when I think of suspension. Something that can seem so brutal to others, is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever been able to see or even be apart of myself. Every aspect of it touches me. Every ritual, every smile, even down to the carefully laid out white tables full of trays and gloves. All of it becomes part of it and at the very centre of it you have this person dangling by hooks, surrounded by love. Its wonderful.

I walked into the hall and there was quiet chatter from the bystanders. There were three strong men in the centre of the room, hooks in chests, backs and legs. The team worked like a machine around them. One person holding the cross beam still, another set of people watching out for blood, another set pulling the lines through the hooks. It took a long time for everything to be perfect and even then they still went back to adjust and retie. All while these people buzzed around, these men stood still. They smiled at times but mostly they just concentrated and kept breathing. What they were about to do was no easy task and they knew it. You could see it in their faces, read it in their body language, if I had been closer I would have heard it in their voices.

When everything was ready the music changed and the lights went off. The only light was the spotlight in the centre shinning down on them. They rose up slowly. Perfectly still, perfectly connected, all in the same position standing upright. They paused for a moment, breathing, feeling, being. Soon they were slowly spinning around. It was something I don’t think I could ever forget. From the moment it started I couldn’t look away. Something about it sucked me in and even if the earth had opened up on itself around me, I would never have noticed. I couldn’t hear anything or see anything other than what was right in front of me. For some reason I started crying, I wasn’t happy or sad or anything. I was just in total awe of what was unfolding in front of me that I was completely overcome by emotion. There was nothing else in the room anymore, just these three men slowly turning around, suspended by hooks in their skin. It was one of the most beautiful things I’d ever seen. It was powerful beyond measure.

Things didn’t end the way that was intended. Lights went on, crew rushed around with chairs and stools. Lines were cut and the men helped down. Once again we had that well oiled machine. Instructions given quickly and carried out without hesitation. What needed to be done was done and even though it looked like chaos it was so under control. What I saw only added to what I had just seen moments before. It added to how real and raw that kind of performance is. It showed how human those men were. For a long time I didn’t want to speak, I just wanted to watch these people run around and clean up and pack down and do what they had to do. I just wanted to sit there and soak everything in, I didn’t want to ever have to move because I was so afraid of losing that moment.

But it had to end, and I had to go. On the car ride back to His house, He was commenting so much on how well the crew did when things didn’t go to plan. How well the clean up was and this and that and I snapped at Him. I wasn’t dismissing that what He was talking about wasn’t important because it really was. But that’s not why I went to watch, that’s not what that was about and it wasn’t the part I wanted to talk about. I wanted to talk about those three men, hanging by their skin in the centre of the room and how it was the most amazing thing I had ever been able to watch unfold right in front of me.

I realised that He didn’t understand what I saw. No one can really understand what suspensions are to me. What that performance meant to me and how deeply it got under my skin. Everyone has glimpses of it but I think you don’t ever really get it, unless you have done it. Even then, what you see is not what I see.

I wish someone could look inside my head, my heart, my fucking soul and truly understand the magic that I saw in that suspension. It is unlike anything else in the world and I am so glad that I got to see those three men become living art.

Everyone involved – Thank You.

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