Monday, September 15, 2008

desire despair

Marni Horwitz has captured some really lovely images, the top 2 of which are from her time living in the Czech Republic. Her artist statement on this melancholic period of living and loving among these people is interesting; she describes her experience of living there, despite having a lover and many friends and speaking fluent Czech, as feeling consistently on the outside, as getting smaller and slowly disappearing from the edges of her own existence there.

I found Prague to be a very melancholic place, too. I'm a quarter Czech, and so I was not too shocked when confronted with the dour personality of its land, the sad faces who seem to relish their unsatisfactory existence, their dissatisfaction with whatever or whoever is in front of them. My great-grandmother was a perfect example of the Czech personality, as we lay in bed side by side when I was around 8 and she around 80, as she pressed her hands and lips together in fervent prayer, admonishing me to "Pray to Jeeeeezus that he TAKES me tonight. I'm TIRED of this life now! Pray for the Good Lord to take me away tonight!"

"But...Gramma...I don't want you to die tonight! I don't want Jesus to take you! I want you to stay and sleepover the whole weekend!" I protested, tears springing to my eyes. 

"Oh, now, enough of that. I'm TIRED of this LIFE, I say. It's TIME for the baby Jesus to TAKE ME."

If that's not the epitome of a dysfunctional Czech personality, well, I don't know what is.

Anyhow, lovely photos, no?


Anonymous said...

I am half Bohemian and I felt the exact same way "consistently on the outside. Getting smaller and slowly disappearing. I'd always thought it was just us. I actually find it comforting to know others have had this same feeling.

Anonymous said...

the floaty one, eerie, but lovely indeed

Zach said...

i thought it was your grandmother!
also, this is bathically my favorite story from you. so much better live, though.

molly said...

beautiful photos. wonderful story.