60 Seconds: Your Job Is to Live Up to Your Vitality!
by Diane Wyzga | December 10, 2020 | 60 Seconds, Podcast | 0 comments
Coming to you from Whidbey Island, Washington this is 60 Seconds, your daily dose of hope, imagination, wisdom, stories, practical tips, and general riffing on this and that.
Question: How do you reconcile your life-long struggle with dissatisfaction while continuing to unleash your creativity?
You’ve heard the answer, but do you know the story?
The legendary choreographer Martha Graham offered a life-changing response in a conversation with then-acclaimed choreographer Agnes de Mille who lost faith in her talent:
Graham said, “There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique, and if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium; and be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, not how it compares with other expression. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open.
As for you, Agnes, you have so far used about one-third of your talent.”
“But,” I said, “when I see my work I take for granted what other people value in it. I see only its ineptitude, inorganic flaws, and crudities. I am not pleased or satisfied.”
“No artist is pleased.”
“But then there is no satisfaction?”
“No satisfaction whatever at any time,” she cried out passionately. “There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”
[A conversation found in the 1991 biography Martha: The Life and Work of Martha Graham by dancer and choreographer Agnes de Mille.]
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Production Team: Quarter Moon Story Arts
Music: Mer’s Waltz from Crossing the Waters by Steve Schuch & Night Heron Music
All content and image © 2019 – Present: for credit & attribution Quarter Moon Story Arts
Steve Schuch &Night Heron Music
Diane Wyzga, Podcaster & Ideas-to-Action Facilitator