Posts Tagged ‘mortality’


Thursday, August 1st, 2013

I don’t feel anymore. Not really. It’s more an echo of what feeling was like, an echo of what traveling in a flesh and pulsing nutrient water casing was like. I exist in sensory deprivation, not having senses.

I do still have consciousness and empathy, which actually feels pretty serene now that I no longer have hormones or a brain to fuck up my experience of either of them. My body, the brain and endocrine in particular, were like two hideous menacing bullies permanently clawed in my back, pulling me every which way, tearing me from my insides, constantly, for entirety.

You’re still there, and I can see what your poor brain is doing to you. How you are so beautifully agonizing over how dreadful it must have been for me, consumed in your own terrible awareness of loss. My dearest imperfect tortured captured soul, projecting your images. How I wish I could tell you what it was really like for me.

First, a rustle in the bushes. I wake from a dream in which I am walking over stones cast in iron under a purple sky with green clouds and seven moons. I realize it is something large and fast creating the noise. The familiar state of paralyzing fearful power takes hold as my skin flushes in electric tingles.

My body is still churning in slumber chemicals, lethargic and flopping as my mind recognizes the sound of my screen door being thrown open. An instant flash of fear sparks adrenaline which surges me into more discombobulation.

For an instant my mind is the dull one, comparatively, as I mindlessly spring out of bed like an animated corpse, half dreaming, and press myself against my wall, crouching, feeling a pleasant cocktail of flooding sensations and emotions.

As a large figure in big boots and cotton for a shirt steps onto my floor mattress, a loud sound I momentarily don’t understand explodes through my consciousness. As I begin the thought of the idea of the question of whether or not I actually heard it, or was perhaps waking myself up from a dream or imagining it, a flush of heat from my side expands in all directions. More chemicals.

I begin to formulate the words I will use against the back of the man who is well on his way to running down my hallway, which are something along the lines of “SHhheholy you ffffhh.. did you just fucking shoo–”

Then, a calm in my inner storms, like the sudden and absolute silence of flipping a toggle. I look down.

The shitbag psycho had, indeed, shot me. The color is beguiling, black and deep and thick and gushing and pooling away from me like a radial colony of fire ants at 6200fps. It reminds me of the Big Bang of which I have never actually seen. I marvel at how gorgeous it is. I probably even smirk. It is all I am aware of, untroubled and harmonious.

Before I can test to see if it hurts to chuckle, calm gives way to the halcyon I’d sought to claw toward every moment of my existence. I have been here, and the body of your lover has been where you now find it, ever since.

I wish I could tell you what it was really like for me.

I was falling asleep late in the night with my glass door open, realizing the screen door was not locked. This realization gave way to the image of someone rushing through the brush outside my room into my house, and a tumble of images and feelings after that. I then sat up and wrote this story in bed, squinting without my glasses.

R.I.P. Zita the Aerialist, 2004-2012

Thursday, September 6th, 2012

This year, more than most and less than some, has been a year of letting things go and allowing new things in. In that vein, it seems another identifying aspect of my life has come to a close.

Once first recognizing mixed feelings regarding how to credit my aerial acts in “Embodied”, and after months of knowing the time was drawing closer, I have decided to retire Zita the Aerialist, and allow the domain (which now redirects here) to expire.

There is an air of sadness and loss here, alongside a sense that this is the right thing to do. The persona and the theatrically engineered aspect of what Zita has represented for me, along with the dreams I once had of sharing her with the world, performing in a circus or ongoing show like Zinzanni, has run its course. I know those things are not in the cards for me. It’s time to leave that game, officially, to the people who actually play it.

Courtnee – There's Something in the Air from Paul Hawxhurst on Vimeo.

Instead, I want to continue to work and focus through the sense of failure to the other side; The side which allows me to integrate aerial into my life with no pressures or expectations, and see what happens. Keeping Zita around, having the website around with no one calling for years, was like a thorn in my sole, a reminder of what I wanted her to be, irritating and distracting me.

But Zita, it turns out, was the mask that allowed for me to be, well, me.

I still teach aerial, more than I ever have in the past really, and consider aerial to be a big part of my life. I may also occasionally perform one-off aerial acts like the level 1 demonstration I did for the “Show and Tell” event at Versatile Arts, or a party now and then, though I don’t know what will come of my signature act. I suppose, honestly, with how few opportunities I’ve managed to create to perform it since the Little Red Studio dissolved, it doesn’t really matter very much.

Zita, you were great to me. At one time, I thought we might see the world together. I thought you might flesh out into your own little person, your own character. I thought maybe you’d be my ticket out of this country and to a place where we’d be appreciated more. Regardless of the thinness of your veil, you helped me find my strength when I thought I had none left. You allowed for me to express myself in ways that would have been hopelessly difficult to have achieved without your shield as I bled in the air for our audiences.

Thank you for being there for me.

I can do it myself, now.

Rest in Power, Zita.

You may have seen Zita at:

I have trained with the following teachers and institutions:

  • Versatile Arts (Silks, Rope, Trapeze, Sling, Duo Trapeze and Duo Silks)
  • School of Acrobatics and New Circus Arts (Everything!)
  • Bobby Hedglin-taylor (Silks)
  • The Toronto School of Circus Arts (Static trapeze, Silks, Corde Lisse)
  • The Cabiri (Fire eating, Character Portrayal, Static Trapeze, Aerial Sling)
  • Trapezius (Corde Lisse, Static Trapeze, Aerial Hoop, Silks)
  • The UMO Ensemble (Aerial Hoop, Low Flying Trapeze)
  • Donia Love, formally of Ignis Devoco (Fire Spinning)

Tortured Internals

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

Internal view of an abandoned home in Rio Linda, on Elkhorn Blvd. Taken in the summer of 2011 during my 2 week road trip. My guess is that by now it’s gone, as Rio Linda has been exploding in housing development since I left Sacramento in 1998, and I couldn’t find the structure on google maps today.

Starter Home

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

Gorgeous abandoned home in Rio Linda, on Elkhorn Blvd. Taken in the summer of 2011 during my 2 week road trip. My guess is that by now it’s gone, as Rio Linda has been exploding in housing development since I left Sacramento in 1998, and I couldn’t find the structure on google maps today.


Friday, June 8th, 2012

Gessoing over a painting on an old canvas for the 5th time. This will be the last; either this next piece on that canvas ends up being something I want to keep, or I burn it. Sometimes canvases just aren’t right. Shown are some of the previous incarnations I’ve bailed on.

Love Shack

Saturday, August 27th, 2011

I can’t believe this is still here.. A tiny abandonded shack on Blake Road, in Wilton California (where I grew up). Taken During my 2011 road trip down the Oregon coast, to Sacramento, Vegas for Defcon 19, LA and back up.

Saturday, December 4th, 2010

The sight of shellfish stacked together in a tank makes me irrationally sad, since i dont mind actually eating them. Maybe it’s the incarceration part of it. :(

I am a delicate flower

Monday, September 10th, 2007

I have decided on my next tattoo, to embellish the one I have on my lower back. It will be a cherry blossom branch, stylized and colored. I’ve decided to put the piece on my credit card so I can get it done right away, once I find the artist. It’s going to be fucking gorgeous.

Simply put, the cherry blossom represents “Spiritual Beauty”. The symbolism in both Chinese and Japanese culture is lovely, and well suited for me;

For the Chinese the cherry blossom is a very significant symbol of feminine power, beauty and sexuality and often holds an idea of feminine dominance. Herbal lore describes the cherry blossom as often being the symbol of love.

For the Japanese it represents the transience of life, as the cherry blossom is a very delicate flower that blooms for a short time. An example of great beauty and sadness, the samurai saw the cherry blossom as a melancholy reminder of death amidst life. Coming to terms with their mortality allowed them to live their lives fully, with little use for pettiness, argument, callousness or cruelty.

The cherry blossom is a reminder that our life will not last, a representation of beauty in feminine form, and it captures the sense of dignity and strength contained within something so fragile and fleeting.

It’s perfect. I am so ready. It’s time to own that I am a delicate flower, to come to real peace with it and treasure how I am in my soul and honor that – always. I can still joke about being a “delicate fucking flower, you shitlicking fuckhole!”, but all the progress and work I’ve put into myself over the last few years has been to come to terms with my vulnterability and delicacy, see it as a strength than a weakness. I want a reminder of how far I’ve come, that I have everything I need inside myself, and that often it resides in the last place I think to look for it. At this point, what holds me back the most is forgetting

I want something beautiful and feminine and complex and sexual and blood fucking red that wraps around me and embraces my body like I visualize myself comforting my inner child. I am so excited. Just telling people about what the thing means to me will remind me that I know how to be a better person.