Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Jason Wallace Triefenbach thinks of death, often

I have been thinking lately about Jason Wallace Triefenbach, because I have talking to the guys who made the movie Blind Cat Black with me (Aaron AuBuchon and Chizmo) about doing final color treatments to the final cut and mastering it to DVD and finally putting the project out - and behind us.

This leads to considerations of packaging. Though I adore the stills that Chizmo's buddy Mathew Pitzer shot the one day he did lighting for us (especially the picture of Toyy coming down the bartop at CBGB that I used for the movie's MySpace profile shot), I want something more simple and bold for the cover - and something even more Toyy-centric, since she has the star role, that of The Absent-Minded Tightrope Walker.

I think I'll go with one of the sexy portraits of Toyy shot by Wiley Price of the St. Louis American that we used as the basis for the sex ad for her character that instigates the film's plot, such that is, not that much of anyone who has seen the movie has been able to follow that plot!

Jason being the costar, The Flower Shop Boy, I want to use an image of him somewhere in the DVD art. I sort of like this picture of him in character I shot one very cold winter morning in front of Sam Light Loans (the pawnshop that marks the spot where T.S. Eliot was raised!), though a picture of him posed opposite Toyy might help spark the idea that their characters are intended as alter egos or shadows of the same twingendered person.

With Jason much on my mind lately (Toyy is always on my mind - always), I received an email from him yesterday. I'm fortunate to have landed on the distribution list for his musings from Los Angeles, where he and his wife Julie live now. Here is some of what is on the mind of this talented young man ...


Bleeding to death in the street

By Jason Wallace Triefenbach

A car was stopped and at first we thought he had been struck by a vehicle. Julie asked me if there might be something we could do to help? I pulled over, opened the door and began walking to the small group gathered around. Two people on phones, someone running, then I saw blood.

His shirt looked like flesh - deeply stained, almost purple under the streetlight. His legs were out in front, sprawled over the pavement; shoes shining brightly crimson. And streams of blood, rivulets streaking away from him. Exiting; searching for earth, finding gutter.

At thirty feet I heard the word "tourniquet". A delivery truck pulled alongside.

Sirens in the distance.

I don't remember hearing the word "shot" or "shooting", but I reacted to it so it must have been said. I turned as flashing lights echoed on the black trees and walked back to the car.

Julie standing there on the passenger side.

"Let's go."

Her eyes wet, questioning. Brow furrowed like broken riverbed.

"He's been shot."

Concern for the victim became concern for her safety - my own - and we drove home. Our voices broke the silence, sporadically.

We bickered in the bathroom, both realizing the stress compelling us. Then we slept.

I didn't dream.


I think about death often, I suppose. Probably not much more or less than most of us. Trying through poetry and such - "succumb to the illogical terminus of one's mortality" - to chart a gentle way through the fear. An old friend died this past summer of gunshot wounds. He seems OK. Less fear after that- sporadic moments when the ridiculous temporality of all this rises in me like a swirling wave... Bataille helped recently, taught me to welcome the moments of terror - let the sweat wash over me. Cherish the silent command of the grave echoing back upon me from my future / your future / wormhole / ancient future.

At such intervals the making of art seems to me more than simply the simple incline littered with money and disappointments. At such moments I feel so very blessed indeed to have been impelled by nature and ego to undertake these clumsy constructions - the attempts to become a prism filtering and projecting bits of the Complexity back into itself.

When we sing it is the Universe giving voice to its own continuous unfolding. When we dance we are making love to Godhood. When we die we deny death

No comments: