While he lived like a king, I was banished to the garage. In my absence our garage had become both a “bedroom” and my mother’s storage unit, filled with Amazon boxes and bags of old clothing which reached the ceiling. As I tripped on miscellaneous items walking through the door, I wondered how I would spend my time stuck inside and living back home.
I’ve always been passionate about two things: art and flowers. When what we assumed would be a simple two week break from normality slowly turned into a month, then two, then more, I realized I had the one thing I had been lacking since I started college: time. Moving back home with my family and watching everything close around me left me with so much free time to take advantage of. I could finally pursue all the hobbies I’ve had since I was a kid that had been thrown onto the back burner when school started to become more demanding.
This summer I formed an alliance of multi-cultural poets called Mad Mouth Poetry. There are 6 of us: Cyrus Sepahbodi, Arthur Kayzakian, Maya Pescatore, Damieka Thomas, Ideas Aubrey, and (me) Ruth Christopher. Half of our team is in the Sacramento/Davis area, half are in L.A. Together we pooled our resources and are building a digital platform for community, poetry, and activism.
Over the summer and this petrifying pandemic, a writer's block and an artist block stood at my door, waiting for me to welcome them in. Of course these blocks were disguised as blank pages in a book and faded ink in my pen. Would I let them in? I don’t know
When that stimulation is suddenly taken away and self-isolation stands in its place, many feel lost and unable to control their lives. Despite all of the negative thoughts that accompany our worldwide pandemic situation, the down time in our lives can be used to explore our creative sides which are sometimes lost in our day-to-day. Quarantine, and the reoccurring boredom that follows, has given me the opportunity to explore my￼ more creative side and discover new hobbies that interest me.
I often ponder the significance behind my innovative mediums. What is the meaning of what I do, and why does it matter? Questions like these, I have posed to myself for years. I always rejected the idea of prescribing a purpose for my artwork, as drawing for me, is a creative release.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, I was actively creative in my daily life. As an English major part of a collegiate dance team, I would write and dance on a regular basis until COVID-19 changed the world as we know it, leaving me in a creative slump.