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L T Sparrow
Photograph - Photography/ditigal Art
A few years ago I tried my hand at clay sculpture. Most of them were feminine figures and masks but this "to scale", primordial image emerged in my first attempt at making a bust. She is sculpted in white clay and as a sculpture the stark white of the clay accents her smooth bald head and dramatic features. Sadly, she cracked in the firing process and as a result ended up out in my yard under a mesquite tree. A few weeks later I found a rabbit skull while clearing some brush. It seemed a fitting companion to the fractured "goddess". Later that summer I had taken the bird netting off my garden and left it lying on the ground unattended for several days. When I returned I found a king snake entangled and dead in the net. I was very sad at the loss of my guardian snake who kept the rattles snakes at bay and held the pack rat and bunny population down to a low roar. So, I carried it over to the mesquite tree which now seemed to be taking on the appearance of a shrine of sorts, a memorial to life, death and transformation. It didn't seem right to just add the snake to my now growing collection of dead things, so I draped the snake around her, this way and that, around her shoulders, around her neck and settled at last as a reptilian headdress, the snake now kissing or biting who can say. I sat back and looked at the assemblage with a strange feeling of awe and elation. I scurried off to get my camera and on my way back a crescent moon shaped stone, another collected item, caught my eye. In a flash I knew where it was going to go, a dark crescent moon to represent the dark moonless nights when stars appear their brightest and when life begins anew.
For years she has remained locked in a photograph, nameless but not entirely forgotten waiting......
Her name is Lilith after the Hebrew goddess. According to Jewish mythology, Mesopotamian text of Assyria and Babylon, folklore or tales from the crypt, she is depicted as possibly Adams first helpmeet, made from dust just like Adam. As the story goes, it was not a happy union as she considered herself his equal and refused to be subservient and she left Adam in anger and then would not return to Garden of Eden. She is depicted as a demon, a seductress, but also as "The Divine Lady" and as a "Great Mother" of agricultural life.
August 16th, 2013
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