Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Demons

I come from a Cape Verdean background, where superstition is still very much alive.  The fusion of western religion and old West African believes mesh in contemporary society, as bugs bunny and The Simpsons run through-out the day on television.  This new world mix is a place of acceptable confusion and quick assimilation.  As I roped Tuesday morning here in the yard I did so purposefully facing some graffiti murals that surround the main yard, and as the calves burned from the previous day's workout, and the sweat poured from the days 11 o'clock sun, my mind started to imagine and create stories and histories about the images in front of me, everything from monkey faces to dissolving alien creatures.  Not too long ago (and still in many parts of the world) these images would be (are) connected to the spaces of evil.  I thought about such images being thought-of in the minds of my ancestors and how they would have been perceived.  It is not uncommon for a person to be possessed in Cape Verde, their bodies controlled by a demon and imprisoned for the duration of the attentional deed, and yet here they, such imaginations served as art and popular distance, reflective differences of otherness and incredibleness.  These images around me now (as I do this residency) are creative symbols of a different imagination, but as I skipped in front of them I thought of their acceptance and wondered about time travelling.  These would have been ghosts, some of them unfathomed images which would have needed immediate attention (from a witch doctor likely).  Such images in dreams might have been death to the mind or soul, if not to the physical body as well!

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