I woke up early this morning certain of one thing: I will not live past this year. I will not survive past the age of 56.
It was not a panic, nor a vague fear. Just a clear understanding: 56 is it, the final year.
There was no image of death in a fiery wreck or a wasting away of cancer. Only the knowledge.
I digested this with detached calm, and then thought, “Hell, I better get moving on these art projects!”
And as I lay there, I saw clearly what petty things had gotten in my way, saw a different kind of year ahead, saw a furious whirlwind of creation to bring into the physical world those visions of my imaginings, a maelstrom that absorbs the whole universe.
It begins today.
It’s still hot – high 80s – in Atlanta, and on a weekday afternoon no one was at the community pool. I took my camera and a large gray sheet, and filmed in slow motion my dance with death.
[No sound in this video]
I gave over to my limbs the freedom they needed, let them create shapes of struggle and escape, flailing and flight.
Happier, in a certain childlike way, than I have been in a long while.
I may not live to be 100. But today my mortality, in all its certainty, prolonged my life.
Today’s penny could only be a 2015. If I had a 2016, I’d use that.