Coming Out With Sacred Verses
Artists always have the deep down hope that somehow, some way their work will find their target audience and resonate with others, that people will tune in to their frequency and receive the messages of the work. Artists don't expect miracles; they know that art is a subjective experience and is rarely interpreted exactly as intended. That their art will strike someone at the deepest level and take part in a life changing experience isn't what artists expect, though we might carry that hope with us as we struggle to make our creative voices heard.
This month I was astounded when I received notice of a new blog post by my friend and colleague Lo, author of Art & Numen and founder of Numen Arts. Lo shared with his readers the profoundly personal experience of coming out to his parents, and I was taken aback when he let it be known that my book Sacred Verses had been part of his process and a seed for his courage:
[this excerpt reposted from Lo's blog entry of January 11, 2022, titled Self Immolation]
So, I came out to my parents on friday. This was one of the most nerve-wracking things I’ve ever done, ever. I’ve been closeted for the better part of a decade, and I’ve been trying to build myself up within the confines of the artificial womb I’d constructed to live in; the alter ego, the side blog, the work persona, the video game avatar. But an adult is not supposed to be in the womb; an adult is supposed to be in the world.
I knew it was time. I turn 33 today, and I couldn’t bear the burden any longer. The womb was wet, but cold, and I was stunting. So I prayed, prayed hard, and hit the ‘send’ button on the second version of a letter I’d been working on for a year.
Having seen he Sun-God swallowed by his mother, I searched for his trail of fire upon the waters, seeking the past, security in what has been; seeking the present, security in what one knows; seeking the future, security in what one expects will be. Ptahmassu Nofra-Uaa, Sacred Verses
I’ve been making my way through Ptahmassu’s Sacred Verses, reading on my commute to a new job working in the completely unexpected law industry, and it was definitely one of the things that helped strengthen me for the process of coming out – of sending my old self to the grave so that I could finally, fully, be reborn. The text is so much more than this, but it is also, as was once said, a set of instructions: instructions on how to die and be reborn. I’m grateful to the Gods for this book coming out at the right time for me.