Saturday, September 11, 2004

Shallowly Buried Ghosts

How shallowly buried, these ghosts of the past. Summoned awake, six months down the track. One, at the other end of the phone line, proffers caring and the promise of a future visit. I feel moved, more than I might have imagined. The other, following a series of coincidences, comes to see the half-dead 2CV lying in the garage. Brings with him the guitar with which he is inseperably associated. During this unprecedented visit he sits in the bedroom, eyes closed, playing the Flamenco that comes more easily than conversation. The bizarre quality of the event does not pass by me unnoticed. I wonder, did he notice the absence of espresso and bread and olive oil; inferred appreciation for his gift of music? Was he aware I was not actually being inhospitable?


Blogger J. Allen Brown said...

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3:57 PM  
Blogger Mary Desmond said...

Hey counsellor, aren't you supposed to tell him, in a way he could hear. I still love the poetry, the imagery, and i guess there is a difference between verbalising and telling. The scene is beautifully impressionist.

10:52 AM  
Blogger Mary Desmond said...

Hmmm you are doing counselling training I thought I had misread, so I just wondered why didn't you just check it out, my phantasy is... or do we only do that with clients, and if so why just with clients?, but in psychodrama they call it tele, it also has the terms depth empathic response, connecting on the edge of awareness et al. Hey if you are still bringing out papers it will still be fresh.

So sometimes people know we know and words are not necessary perhaps more than redundant. In some of the action therapies the grounding of experience is done through the action, sort of like the idea of body memory, words can interfere with this process. I recall two scenes from Master & Commander, in the first Capt Lucky Jack gives the boy suffering from clinical depression coz his arm has been amputated a well thumbed copy of Nelson's Strategies. He obviously reads and rereads as he is able to find a battle by the page number with great excitement. The handing over of the gift is enough for the boy to regain hope and self-esteem without a lecture on how nelson too had lost his arm. In the second example the Capt gives a lecture to an ensign on how to be a leader, by the end of the lecture the ensign is struggling to remember the words but has no connatural knowledge and commits suicide in the next scene.

And sometimes we are afraid to let other people know our true feelings. We have ego defences because we need them, and we through greater awareness, once we know we are using them we can choose more often to lower or raise them. Counselling is one of the trainings which encourages more self-awareness and greater verbalisation, even if you are specialising art or dance therapies.

The quotation about human beings comes from either gestalt or TA counsellor, but you can find similar from Martial, Just as Anais Nin's quotation you offer, some quote in the Latin of Juan de la Cruz, quidquid recipitur recipiendus est in modo recipiendo. But when people quote Latin i wonder why they do it often and what is received. Reader response eh! I enjoy reading your posts. I don't have your poetry so I won't be making another long response again. It makes the place untidy please remove once read if it spoils the balance. The poetry of this place is its charm. And I should put theology and geometry above all things have you ever read the Confederacy of Dunces by J Kennedy Toole I just finished reading it.

7:56 PM  
Blogger Mary Desmond said...

Having said all that I can see the difficulty. You want to enjoy the timeless wordless objectless magickal space he has created with music, and you are not sure if he is with you in that place. Saying in the middle of it all like the gel from clueless, I am not laying on a spread coz the music is so ineffable and I thought it might kill the mood, would have killed the mood. And by the end you would have been so lost in a timeless wonder, being able to recall that is what you wanted to say would necessarily mean that you were not able to drift off in wonderment, oh I think i see the problem now. But you could tell him now surely. Or does telling him now mean that you would necessarily detract from the san damiano transformative experience by returning to petty ego concerns and the vain control aspects oh dear overanalysis leads to paralysis. Now I get it sorry.

8:03 PM  

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