I recently rediscovered my passion for street art after visiting an exhibit showcasing some great talent in Chicago. The experience was reminiscent of my trip to Graffiti Graveyard in Duluth, MN.
Okuda, based in Madrid, produces large scale murals which a multitude of color with the greying shapes of the surrounding buildings. While much of his work challenges the meaning of life and the false freedom of capitalism, I find that I like his abstract pieces that feature the buildings themselves are much more interesting:
A man sits across the aisle from me on a southbound train to Chicago.
He cracks walnuts with his fingertips, carefully checking his digits to ensure their preservation.
I’m not sure why, though, as his hands seem to be mechanically worn.
Probably from fruitlessly repairing small engines, originally purchased to add comfort and ease to daily Michigander life.
The man’s jacket is old.
It looks neither warm nor comfortable.
The black has faded and the white has become grey; age has effected the man in a similar fashion.
His phone, a Blackberry, is chipped and shattered.
His work boots, covered and cracked with salt, show similar signs of decay.
The man hasn’t aged well, but aged he has.
The man sleeps against the window of the swaying train.
Sleep is relative on this southbound bullet.
Momentarily closing your eyes will offer enough rest to endure the last few hours.
There are no headphones, no iPod, no literature for this man to enjoy — only the thought of reaching his destination.
And half a roasted chicken wrapped in tinfoil.
The man counts the coins from his pocket.
His watch rattles as he shakes the few quarters and dimes in a feeble attempt to magically produce more money.
There’s a cafe car at the front of the train, but the grocery bag filled with home-cooked food is an indication he’ll be staying put.
The man now twirls a Pall Mall while looking at his lighter longingly.
A few more hours until he can indulge, but for now he’ll spend the rest of the trip anxiously waiting to disembark at Union Station.
After a summer spent running around Milwaukee, I’ve been taking it easy. Long hours and cold weather have made it an easy task, and it’s allowed my mind to wander in some interesting directions. Here’s some inspiration I’ve unearthed when thinking toward my future.
I’ve been really inspired lately. It’s a good feeling to pick up a pen and pad once again. To be able to spend an afternoon scribbling away with a new album playing in the background is peaceful. Brazil is far into the future, and the travel itch has returned. Milwaukee may have run it’s course … I know winter has already done so.