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The Artist and Writer as Rebel

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A Tribute to Enneagram number 4, the Individualist

"In retrospect, I think the one thing that kept me going
was that I wouldn't be appeased.

You know, maybe you see in little children
that they are quiet.
You give them candy and they are happy.

But some of us, even when we were little children,
wanted something else - what life really gives.
Something that would justify our being here.

And I meant it.
And I would take nothing less."

Louise Nevelson

"The key to the creative type
is that he is separated
out of the common pool of shared meanings.

There is something in his life experience
that makes him take in the world as a problem;
as a result he has to make personal sense out of it.

Existence becomes a problem
that needs an ideal answer;

but when you no longer accept
the collective solution to the problem of existence,
then you must fashion your own.

The work of art is, then,
the ideal answer of the creative type
to the problem of existence. "

Ernest Becker

"I object to all the codes;
in fact I object to all human behavior.

There is something about it
that won't justify you in being yourself;

there is something about it
that causes people to leave home.

I did leave home for that reason.
I went in search of a place in which,
or a person with whom, I could be myself.

I am glad I did.

I was always a moralist
and I had a high conception of life as an art.

Of course life as an art is a lost cause.
Why so much of my life
has been spent in lost causes
is difficult to explain.
Except that they are not lost, for me."

Margaret Anderson

" Non-life to me
is all that does not stir,
rise, mount, ring, resound, accrete.

It is the presence opposite you that remains inert
when you are overwhelmed;

the presence in which nothing arrives;
the presence that leads you to nothing
and considers it something;

that solicits your interest
only after the subject has been betrayed,
or the object denied;

when all that is rich in substance
has been drained away,

when the talk has been bypassed
and the idea reduced.

It is the presence that puts you in prison
and keeps you there wihout effort,

it is the theme that is never allowed to develop,
the orchestration that is never listened to.

It is the enthusiasm that is labeled naive,
the originality that goes unrecognized.

It is the lyrical always turned into the practical,
the political always preferred to the psychological.

It is the dead hand that demands to function,
the empty space that insists it is full,
the uncontributing that must contribute,

the uncharming that must thrive and flourish,
the limited that must limit and define,
impose, establish and judge.

I know you all, I fear you all -
you would starve me to death."

Margaret Anderson

"Meanings concern individuals
and constantly change.
One cannot give meanings to another.
Meaning must be found
by the individual seeker."

Victor Frankl

"Is is instructive
"to think that there is not a single person in this room,
or for that matter in any room in the world,
who at some nicely chosen point in historical time-space,
would not be put to death there and then,
here and now,
by a commonsense majority in righteous rage.

The color of one's creed, necktie,
eyes, thoughts, manners, speech,
is sure to meet somewhere in time or space
with a fatal objection
from a mob that hates that particular tone.

And the more brilliant,
the more unusual the man,
the nearer he is to the stake.

"Stranger" always rhymes with "Danger".
The meek prophet, the enchanter in his cave,
the indignant artist, the nonconforming little schoolboy,
all share in the same sacred danger.

And this being so,
let us bless them, let us bless the freak;
for in the natural evolution of things,
the ape would perhaps never have become man
had not a freak appeared in the family.

Vladimir Nabokov

Sages Villanelle

She fills the page, her chosen stage.
Oblivious to how things should be.
No sage will tolerate a cage.

With wandering prose, without a wage,
the audience invisible, she yet has glee.
She fills the page, her chosen stage.

She laughs with paperhanded rage,
slashing cliches and normalcy.
No sage will tolerate a cage.

The curtain lifts from every page,
the curtain open, all can see.
She fills the page, her chosen stage.

For aging insights seek a sage,
who is not happy just to please.
No sage will tolerate a cage.

Immortality loves the written page.
There is only one way to be.
She fills the page, her chosen stage.

No sage will tolerate a cage.

Judith Pordon

"The rebel insists
that his identity be respected;
he fights to preserve
his intellecutal and spiritual integrity
against the suppressive demands of his society.

He must range himself against the group
which represents to him conformism, adjustment,
and the death
of his own originality and voice."

Rollo May

"The evolution of the self
is an act of self creation
not the accumulating of insight and understanding.

This fundamental truth of the self
can be realised only
if the individual is willing and courageous enougn
to follow to some natural conclusion
this moment of experience,
this facing the unknown and participating
with the total committment of the self.

Such expresison, such passion for life
may emerge in written, spoken,
graphic or asethetic forms
in relation or in isolation;
in I-Thou enounters;
and in silent, inner experience.

Not apriori theories, principles or techniques,
but rather a compassionate willingess is required -
as is the courage to live before the fact,
before the understanding,
before any rational support or certainty,
to live the moment to its natual peak and conclusion,
and to accept with dignity
whatever joy, grief, misfortune, or unexpectedness occurs."

Clark Moustakas

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