In the Halprin Method/Motional Processing/Life Art Process writing is an important aspect. It is used to identify resources, journaling on themes, gestalt dialogue, scripting on the body parts, and shaping narratives. (Rutkowski, 1984) The writings can be done in a journal or it can be apart of a drawing as seen in Figure 8, “the Sun Rises.” Writings can be created before a movement exploration or afterwards. Writings can be apart of the image when participants are directed to write a sentence (sometimes just one word) that describes the image from the three level aspect. Over the years I have created many poems, journal entries and written pieces as exploration and as a method of clarity before, after and on occasion, during movement explorations.
In my process of writing, after a movement exploration, I tend to be mythical and allegorical. I have a long history of using certain symbols as demonstrations of differing aspects of the self. This is demonstrated in a poem I wrote after a red color exploration in 1992 and is associated with Figure 8 (previous post).
The Sun rises: Shou ju wa shi. The red in me feels ancient and makes the sound come from deep inside. The red in me is powerful.
Born so long ago
In the house of the clouds
He has journeyed a 1000 miles and a 1000 lifetimes
To remember his home
Six green dragons have pulled the ropes that has led him here
We have waited so long for you to come
You remember my smile and the twinkle in the eyes
Let us sit and have some tea!
This exploration seemed to touch an older and wiser part of myself who I named, Shou ju wa shi. This name and poem are reflective of a deeper understanding I had of my capabilities and possibilities. These possibilities were discovered or, as an ancient part of me might say, uncovered, in the first and second drawings and explorations (Figure’s 7-8 (previous post). By the time I got to the third drawing (Figure 9 (previous post), I realized that I could access information about how to be/respond by allowing myself to fully feel and express. Of course, I already knew this, as it is a central aspect of the life art process. That being the full expression of the three levels of awareness, through writing, drawing, movement and dialogue. However, the enactment of knowledge is sometimes problematic, as we all tend to forget what we need to know. Below is the poem from the last drawing in the red series of explorations (Figure 9).
You have joined our hands together
Let us keep this brotherhood
Of past and present
Of moon and sun
It is the way of the
Warrior-of the piper-of the dancer
My little brother – call on the spirits
Prepare for the ceremonial.
This poem acknowledges the past and present, the conscious and unconscious, the thinking/logical and feeling/expressive parts of me. In short, the dual nature that is in all beings. When these aspects are joined, they form an ability to defeat obstacles. This ability needs to be acknowledged and nourished through tradition, ritual and celebration.
Rutkowski, A. (1984). Thesis: Development, definition and demonstration of the Halprin Life/Art Process in Dance Education. Unpublished doctorial dissertation, John F. Kennedy University.
Reprinted from my unpublished manuscript: Renewal and Rediscovery of the Self in the Life Art Process: 20 years as participant, assistant and facilitator. By Richard Brunner R-DMT. Copy write 2006.