I’ve been replaying Persona 5, with the goal of getting every single confidant up to par, making the ultimate fusion, so I can command the ultimate persona. This is how sad and boring and awful my life is. One of the side-missions is Yusuke having his slump as an artist. He goes to Mementos and paints what he sees there and calls it “Desire.” The painting is very elegant in craftsmanship, but he admits its shortcomings in theme. He wants to capture the essence of desire, so you get to go around with him and help him find out what the meaning is to him.
I did a post years ago called “Lucien Maverick’s ‘No Apologies’“, where I outlined what I would have done if I had visual art talent to demonstrate what my vision of living without apology means. My unapologetic self. As I am the type of person who gets random bits of odd inspiration, then has to run with them, I thought about what I would want to visually represent what I see as desire. And I am sharing it all with you. Let’s get down to it.
When I think of desire, I think of something…passionate. I keep thinking violent, but that can read really weird to people. I’m not some psycho. The violence and passion I think of is much akin to the monologue Gomez has in Tim Burton’s Addams Family film, when he is watching Morticia sleep.
For too long, I’ve lived a life where I feel trapped, unable to be the person I want to be. When I was with someone who changed my life, there was such freedom. Such unbridled need to break free. She showed me what it meant to be who I want to be. But then she was gone. And ever since, I’ve been desperately wanting to find that freedom again. That escape from the confines of my poverty-stricken life to live the way I want to live.
So when I say that desire is passionate, violent, burning, consuming, don’t mistake it for me wanting violent things. I just want to experience and be allowed to let who I am loose. Everywhere I go, all day, every day, it seems like I am having to be who I am for someone else. I hate it from the bottom of my little black heart. But then I let some of my true self out and everyone is totally mad! It’s infuriating! Let me be who I am! Let the weird, nerdy, perverted, loyal to his friends man free!
But more than that. This desire as I see it is darkness. I am drawn to it. The knowledge contained within. The danger. I walk in dangerous parts of town alone, daring Lady Luck to finally come at me. To give me a chance to finally cut loose and see if it’s her will to have me dead or if I can rise above it. For years, I was hip deep in that. Now I’m not. I ache for it, long for it, would kill or die for it every day. Got a girly-mate who gets to be hip-deep in that world eventually. Every day I feel this crippling sense of jealousy. I got out for logical, rational reasons. However, that’s not desire! This is about what I desire, not what I logically choose to do. I long for that darkness. I long for the danger. The feeling of knowing that I can die at the drop of a hat, and there being no fear of that. Lately, the urge is stronger than it has ever been. My oldest companion was taken away from me. Just like the woman I loved, this one was taken away by a selfish person who didn’t stop to think about who would be left behind. What this would do to me. I’m fundamentally broken inside. More days than not, I feel dead.
I don’t fear death. I’ve been dead before. When I smashed my skull open, my heart stopped. I was dead, until I was shocked back to life. Death is something that has been on my mind for so long. Part of me longs for it. A by-product of the brain damage-fueled depression that will never leave me for as long as I live. I see death as a companion that most of you probably fear, but I stare into their eyes, almost like a lover.
Now the question is – how to represent that? What visual elements could bring this concept to life? What ways could I express that. My dark, strange, passionate, needing desire? My never-ending search for Death? My desire to roll the dice with Lady Luck and see if this is the day that she finally comes for me? How could I express that? Always saw Lady Luck as a masked woman. A mark that shows no emotion. She’s a trickster, after all. Maybe have it be her face, from above. A large cloak, to which one can see inside. In there is darkness. The darkness I seek. Fire is all around the edges. Her hands are seen above, throwing the dice.
There I am in the darkness of her cloak. The flames around the edges, burning away at who I am, and who I want to be. From behind, there is another form. Feminine, in a way, but then not. It’s arms are around me. It’s face is a skeleton. It’s Death. The spirit that is with me. Loving, giving, yet always taking away. I can’t go with her, where she is. To do so means that I would have to die, and I keep being told by everyone that being dead is bad. That I shouldn’t do that. My hand clutches its bony fingers, but I know that I cannot escape.
Fire is all around us, as the world burns away. But it doesn’t burn like an inferno. A cold, blue color. My fire is contemplative, almost playful. It wants to feel and grow. It is free to come and go. And in the distance, on a hill overlooking us, a tree that is alight with that flame. My innocence. What’s left of the part of me that is still a normal person, like all of you. That’s what burns. The flame wants to tear it down so that it can leave my life forever. My eyes gazing upwards, to the cold mask that is Lady Luck’s face, wondering what the dice that almost seem to glow a fiery red will come up as. The numbered faces seem to drip like blood.
Man, that got kinda crazy. But yeah, that is what I see when I picture desire. My own personal version of it. Do with that what you will.
Until next time, a quote,
“Trust is for old married’s, Buffy. Great love is wild and passionate and dangerous. It burns, and consumes.” – Spike, Buffy the Vampire Slayer