the meat tower

This week I started working on my next sculpture. I’m building it around the plaster cast that a friend helped me make of my own torso. There’s something sweet about seeing my beloved loathsome body as a pure shape, without me in it. Maybe it’s a little like what an astronaut feels, seeing the earth from space. Everything that has ever happened to me, has happened in some version of that jiggling meat tower. Every tantrum, every smile, every orgasm, every panic attack. Learning to walk. Shingles. Trauma and healing.

The meat tower feels creakier than ever. Working is good physical therapy for my weak right hand and its aching wrist. It’s even good for my stiff hips: I set a timer while I’m working, and when the timer goes off I have to go lie on the floor and stretch. I do my stretching in the front room, looking up at these two:


During my last open studio, I referred to them as “the bouncers.” The new one is a bouncer too. I’m calling her the burning bridge.

I knock off early enough to go out for a walk. That’s good physical therapy too (as well as being important for long haul creativity). In spite of everything, the meat tower can still walk all day if provided with suitable footwear. Not too bad for something that’s pushing the half-century mark.