TAE Gallery: artwork, photography, poetry, songs, and book arts

Freak Flag Flyin'

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This photo was created for a themed art show, "Darkness Into Light." The photo shoot was taken in June 2012, but the story begins decades ago.

I was twenty, living in New York City. I was a clean-cut guy, working at the New York Public Library, still in the grips of my Protestant middle-class roots, and yet I was an aspiring artist and poet.

Woodstock was happening. I woke up and became aware of possibilities. Anyway, one day I didn't go to the barbershop. As each day passed, I passed from darkness into light. Like Sampson, I found strength in my long hair.

Then, with the Vietnam war raging, I was drafted. My beautiful hair shorn, lying on the cold concrete floor, barbers chuckling. Before I was discharged, I was sent, one last time, for a haircut. In fact, that was the last time.

My hair remains very much a statement and celebration of light.

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