Photo by Hailey Kean

A lack of meaning or a proper position in this world demands art or self-destruction until either living or nonexistence is favorable.

The artist, the most curious of these cases, exists flitting between two extremes in superposition; living to die and dying to live.

An idea without mortal form or a mortal form possessed by mental chaos.

This dichotomy rules a certain type of person predisposed to feeling nothing or to feel the whole of the world’s joys and sorrows at once, like gin in a rocks glass served neat. It is through these extreme experiences that this person makes sense of the intangible from a strictly tangible experience.

It is this dichotomy that scatters an uncertain, everlasting sense of estrangement from that tangible experience; every waking moment spent at some level, seeking somewhere to belong and to call home. This estrangement stokes the soul to create from its own long-suffering in a place it should have never existed in hopes that its own Oedipal fate could be cast off forever.

But fate and destiny always find their marks; as the soul burns itself to shine brightly to find a place to belong, it seals its demise from which no others like it could previously escape. Beautiful self-destruction begets an audience but not a house. The gladiator risks himself in a series of gambits, looking forward not to the certainty of freedom after his tenure but the possibility of it. There is no sympathy from those that have not been born out of chaos, only rapturous applause from afar after his performance is complete.

A ballerina who destroys herself for her art is regarded as majestic by those watching her own performance to escape towards some semblance of freedom. Her feet, her knees, bruised from innumerable hours worked at her keys to improbable freedom do not garner the same sense of majesty. A moth set ablaze dances in the air just as the ballerina on her stage dances with agonizing passion towards one final, fatal bow.

It is gladiator and ballerina both that live through their suffering that is but vinegar on the lips as a substitute to pure water. They, ruled by their conditions, attempt to become masters of it; to rule your condition is to rule your reality. But humans are not gods. The inexplicable, tempestuous soul continues to burn in an extravagant blaze as the tangible world dances, drunk on entertainment and bliss, around its flames.

And nothing is ever enough for that drunken circle, millions of people wide. For one slip of the sword or faltering of the body leaves this audience aghast and disappointed. Even the most adoring fans join the rest of the audience in silence while the despairing entertainers grasp at what they thought were even a few moments of solidity.

And at this point, there is no hope left. A gladiator slain, a ballerina in tears, a moth into ashes. Self-destruction has reached its limits, energy has been exchanged, and creation meets its end. There is no happy ending.

An idea without mortal form or a mortal form possessed by mental chaos.

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