is a popular legendary anthropomorphic Easter gift-giving character.
Let us give him thanks and praise.
Easter is among my favourite of the times of the year to consider what it means to be a lapsed Catholic. Christmas, for me, always feels kind of depressing. Like watching a crappy family telemovie the ending of which you already know. But Easter feels “proper Catholic”, with the focus much more on penance, privation and guilt. At Easter, you can get boots and all into feeling shit about yourself because the baby Jesus, who you only just got attached to some four short months ago, is about to get it good. Sticks and stones may break your bones, but a proper crucifixion will eff you right up.
So sometimes, I get well into Easter. And this year more so than has recently been the case for me. I consider it an aftershock of homesickness and mild depression, both of which have held like clouds on the horizon for the past few months. I’m going to church this Sunday with my mother, which is emblematic of just how prepared I am to suck up some suffering this year.
However, I digress. Because even though I am no longer into the Baby J, I am still oddly in to the acquittal of love that comes with preparing for loss. In a sense, the emotional commerce of suffering is only meaningful to me because I have an equally moving amount of joy, or the hope for what it might feel like, to contrast it. Those things that make me saddest, which grieve me the most, are usually a reflection of some greater happiness that I once had, or perceived it possible to have.
Without this recurrent pendulum swing between happy/sad/happy/sad, I’d probably have to recalibrate my expectations of “happy” a long way downwards. Potentially, I might feel a lot less depressed if I did so. I’ll let you know if I try it.
One thing that has not been depressing me in these past days is the opportunity to stay again at my friend Sonia’s house. Even without her presence, the home itself has been a great cocoon of safety in a time of consternation. I have discussed how wonderful Sonia is in the past, but suffice to say, I am again finding detail and memory in her home that enlivens me, nourishes me and somehow reminds me of this song. I had been avoiding liking Haim, but then I just realised that I was sick of being a miserable cow and I really should be grateful that they weren’t as toxic as that Lana Del Rey. And if it gets rough, it’s time to get rough. Sometimes fighting it is a waste of time. The natural rupture of things might just be cause for some kind of vivid consciousness.
On a more practical note, an exciting thing about the beautiful Sonia, is that she has an amazing series of photographs titled Harm Less, which are featured in the current issue of January Biannual. You’re going to want to harass the folks at your quality magazine store to stock them. If you are in Queensland that is the GOMA bookstore. I’ve already started my campaign for it being available for me to purr-chase. Like a kitten to a ball of string.
I’ve found them quietly thought-provoking, maybe you will too.