Welcome to my blog..


"We struggle with dream figures and our blows fall on living faces." Maurice Merleau-Ponty

When I started this blog in 2011, I was in a time of transition in my life between many identities - that of Artistic Director of a company (Apocryphal Theatre) to independent writer/director/artist/teacher and also between family identity, as I discover a new family that my grandfather's name change at the request of his boss in WWII hid from view - a huge Hungarian-Slovak contingent I met in 2011. Please note in light of this the irony of the name of my recently-disbanded theatre company. This particular transition probably began in the one month period (Dec. 9, 2009-Jan. 7, 2010) in which I received a PhD, my 20 year old cat died on my father's birthday and then my father, who I barely knew, died too. I was with him when he died and nothing has been the same since. This blog is tracing the more conscious elements of this journey and attempt to fill in the blanks. I'm also writing a book about my grandmothers that features too. I'd be delighted if you joined me. (Please note if you are joining mid-route, that I assume knowledge of earlier posts in later posts, so it may be better to start at the beginning for the all singing, all dancing fun-fair ride.) In October 2011, I moved back NYC after living in London for 8 years and separated from my now ex-husband, which means unless you want your life upended entirely don't start a blog called Somewhere in Transition. In November 2011, I adopted a rescue cat named Ugo. He is lovely. As of January 2012, I began teaching an acting class at Hunter College, which is where one of my grandmothers received a scholarship to study acting, but her parents would not let her go. All things come round…I began to think it may be time to stop thinking of my life in transition when in June 2012 my stepfather Tom suddenly died. Now back in the U.S. for a bit, I notice, too, my writing is more overtly political, no longer concerned about being an expat opining about a country not my own. I moved to my own apartment in August 2012 and am a very happy resident of Inwood on the top tip of Manhattan where the skunks and the egrets roam in the last old growth forest on the island.

I am now transitioning into being married again with a new surname (Barclay-Morton). John is transitioning from Canada to NYC and as of June 2014 has a green card. So transition continues, but now from sad to happy, from loss to love...from a sense of alienation to a sense of being at home in the world.

As of September 2013 I started teaching writing (composition and rhetoric) as an adjunct professor at Fordham University, which I have discovered I love with an almost irrational passion. So blessed for the opportunity and hope to find a more permanent job doing same.

I worked full time on the book thanks to a successful crowd-funding campaign in May 2014 and completed it at two residencies at Vermont Studio Center and Wisdom House in summer 2015. I have done some revisions and am shopping it around to agents and publishers now, along with having written a rough draft of a new book and some other projects.

Not sure when transition ends, if it ever does. As the saying goes, the only difference between a sad ending and a happy ending is where you stop rolling the film.

For professional information, publications, etc., go to my linked in profile and website for Barclay Morton Editorial & Design. My Twitter account is @wilhelminapitfa. You can find me on Facebook under my full name Julia Lee Barclay-Morton. More about my grandmothers' book: The Amazing True Imaginary Autobiography of Dick & Jani

Recently, I started a website Our Grandmothers, Our Selves, which has stories about many people's grandmothers. Please check it out. I will be blogging there, too, now.


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Winter reveals more than it conceals

I realized this walking through Inwood Park today.  As the leaves fall more becomes visible - the structures that underlie what is clothed in warmer times.  Those are the rocks and there is the contour of the hill, now you can see the water from further away.

The cold ground and all the loss brings clarity.  Isn't it true...of grieving and so much more.  Or as Rumi says:

Sorrows are the rags of old clothes
and jackets that serve to cover,
and then are taken off.
That undressing,
and the beautiful
naked body
                     underneath,
                                  is the sweetness
                                                that comes
                                                        after grief.


Here, now, there are still small riots of color here and there, little drops and bursts, all the more beautiful for the grey or darkness surrounding them.  Then there is the ground of leaves.

I found bits of this in Maine, too, even though it had already snowed - bright red apples clinging to trees, the slant of afternoon light on the pond just so - crimson orange if there is such a thing.

It's all about the colors today, so will give more space to photos than words.  One note though, when I stopped to take the photo below with a bird next to the pink roses, two birds flew in to be in the picture.  Only in NYC, I thought, will you find birds trying to upstage another bird in a photo.

But here, too, the people on the benches just looking out at the water, or walking through the darkening woods, happy just to be alive, smiling as we do at each other, nodding, an acknowledgement - yes, here we are, yes it is beautiful even if it's no longer redorangegold.  It's something else beautiful.  Nodding again to one another as if to say: yes, I see that, too.  I am also glad to be alive, grateful to have found time during a day to walk in this end of fall into winter day.  To see the last colors, to acknowledge what is passing away.  To simply breathe.  To know we are always already passing away.  Yes.  But we are also here now.  Yes.  Where yoga meets Derrida.  Yes.

scene stealing birds below the one on top - or perhaps they are spear carriers

















Maine - near my parents' place - yes the red things are apples in tree

pond outside their house

2 comments:

  1. Just about every picture took my breath away. Really love the 4th from the top with the twisted tree. It looks like a piece of sculpture -- which is actually is -- of the living variety...

    Teaching is service to my mind. Not the only one, but definitely an essential one for those who can do it. It's also a gift that keeps on giving.

    Rxxx

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  2. hope you like the pix near your house, too! I love that twisted tree, too. That was not so visible when leaves on it. Looks like a Giacometti doesn't it?

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