When entering the Gorge, leave behind all preconceptions. Let yourself be carried off on a stream of consciousness that tickles the heavens as readily as it grinds down stone.

The Slough

We wanted to see the wrongs righted, the damage undone and the vicious circles cut like the noxious weed sprouting in the garden, a weed whose roots somehow connect to the rot of marshlands far and wide, their tendrils seeking out and feeding off the decay.

The nastiest bogs, of course, it needn’t be said — yet we still need to say it because we have a tendency to forget, or pretend it’s not happening so that we may assuage our own fears, perhaps even convince ourselves that we haven’t been compromised — the nastiest and deadliest and most noxious bogs reside in the past. They reach out to us from across the years and taint us with their stink, their toxic reach, perpetuating the damage.

So, to be redundant and very clear, the rot we’re dealing with has its roots in bygone years, whose weeds have shot their way into our day and age, threatening to take over. This is the damage we strive to undo.

Many deem it foolish. They say that damage done is done and dusted, impossible to reverse. ‘Like mending broken glass!’ they cry, shaking their heads. ‘Leave it alone!’

They’re deluded, of course — worse than that, they’re complicit. I call them inhabitants, if not subjects, if not vectors and agents of the 19th century, perhaps even earlier times, their mindsets dated and obsolete, hitching a ride on today’s ship long enough to move themselves from stagnant pool to still water to bog and back, tainting everything they touch in the process. Hijackers of normality, vectors of disease, weeds in the midst of the fields we sow. They move through our world, tainting it with their lies and prevarications. They’re unctuous, oleaginous, deceptive, malignant, their opinions voiced with a sole aim: to absorb others into a pool of decay from which there’s no escape, a slough oh so green and inviting when observed from a bird’s-eye view, but be foolish enough to approach it and the phrase ‘land in trouble’ assumes real meaning.

Part 2 to follow

NB: this is an experimental postmodernist neogothic abstract piece — draft 1