Help Wanted: Humanity seeks assistance. Cruel playground of a planet requires transformational situation. All experiences welcome. Maybe.
As lights dimmed around the world last week, the concierge lost her Rose-Colored Glasses. It doesn’t happen often, but when her beloved RCGs go missing, the concierge retreats to her lair. This time Twitter and lemon-ginger creme cookies were her only companions. Occasionally she uttered loud, nonsensical numbers and phrases:
Paris, 129. Beirut, 43. 224 in Sinai. More than 100 in Ankara. 1,000 people killed since January. Thousands injured and homeless. Madness.
Madness was the only word that seemed to make sense. She tried to make portraits, but her self was elsewhere.
her self was elsewhere, p.christakos 2015
And then a slip of a rose petal drew her out for awhile.
the poultice, p.christakos 2015
The concierge will not divulge how long she and her petals made pictures or their future plans together. But she will speak about the practice of art as a balm for the soul. Corny, right? A rose petal poultice, really? Self-indulgent frivolity? Perhaps.
rose petal lips and her heart and Prego on her sleeve, p.christakos 2015
But the Hotel is built upon the belief that the making, sharing and experiencing of art is transformational. Art offers sustenance, escape, wisdom, sometimes even transcendence, temporarily. And who can resist a frivolous sip of such a cup? And don’t fret: lemon-ginger sweets, rose-colored glasses and morsels of poetry will remain on the Hotel’s menu until further notice.
from Foundations by Leopold Staff (1878-1957)
I built on the sand | And it tumbled down … | Now when I build, I shall begin | With the smoke from the chimney.
This poem was written at the end of World War II in Poland and appears in A Book of Luminous Things: An International Anthology of Poetry edited by Czeslaw Milosz, Harcourt Brace & Company, 1996. Luminous Things is one of the staff’s favorite poetry books. Meanwhile the poet, Mr. Staff, has been relocated to Miss Dickinson’s wing.
ready, p.christakos 2015
What draws you from your lair?
ps. her self was elsewhere appeared on our doorstep months ago. The Hotel staff doesn’t know her backstory. Only that she asked to be included here. Perhaps she is an applicant.