Agents of Faith: Votive Objects in Time and Place - Bard Graduate Center Gallery
Left at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial
It's taken 22 years to get the courage but I finally made it. There hasn't been one day in those 22 years that I haven't thought about you - talked to you, loved and missed you!
I've seen pictures of the wall and all the things people were leaving - letters - medals - pictures - etc,. just about anything you could think of. I wanted to bring something so I brought "Worry". I remember how you laughed when you saw me making that rag-tag doll out of an old sock. I also remember how you finally helped me finish it, and how it became our mascot. I always put it on my pillow after I made-up my bunk each morning. I even remember the night I threw it at you as you were leaving one night after we had a spat and how you laughed. "Worry" was baptized with a thousand gallons of tears the day you went down. When Art came by and told me you had "augured in" I went fucking crazy. I remember waking up the next morning clutching "Worry" to my chest like a kid clutching it's security blanket.
Somehow I feel "Worry" will be closer to you here than packed away in my trunk of Viet Nam memories. So here it is, tear soaked, red Viet Nam dirt and all. I'm keeping your coffee mug and flight suit (Zips) as we use to call them. It still smells like you I have never washed them. Everything turned to shit when you went down. Rainwater and John De Bock augured in, everyone was spooked. I asked for and got a transfer up north in October, couldn't stand the memories any longer ...
Votive Painting of a Woman's Successful Operation - San Vincenzo alla Sanita, Naples, Italy (Rudolf Kriss Collection, Munich)
One of a collection of retablos votive paintings made by Mexican migrants to the United States (Durand-Arias Collection)
Six years ago, I saw an exhibition on votives & charms at the Wellcome Collection in London.
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