Desolation is something that few people can encapsulate well into an image. It is not something that is easily conceivable to people in this modern era, for it speaks of an emptiness that the world spends excessive amounts of time filling. The massive amounts of noise, action, and other variations do a good job of creating an image that is filled with some sense of action, even in the darkest of places. What desolation requires is a certain stillness. Not a complete stillness, mind you. Just a certain amount that could create a still image that etches slowly into your head. The image created would be unending, even if one were to revisit the place in the exact same spot, only with new objects or with people involved.
Some would say that desolation appears best in areas where civilization has abandoned its touch, for whatever particular reason that suits their interest. However, because stillness is the main point for which desolation draws its strength, one could be at the core of civilization and find shreds and fragments of it in the places that people avoid, and sometimes the places that people walk through everyday. Cities become bastions of desolation in the right circumstances. What is pivotal is timing: Society’s movement is in constant flux, and thus can exist a few moments or hours where an area that is constant with the hum of people is suddenly not. In those moments, these places tend to feel like people were never there in the first place. Trying to paint over or brighten an area, as is seen in cities such as San Francisco, tend to only exacerbate the desolation when it becomes apparent.
If one were to fill their thoughts with these moments, it becomes apparent that desolation, rather than being something that exists outside the realm of the normal, is instead a constant within that realm. Desolation exists like a floater just moving around the periphery of one’s iris: To actually take the time to see it requires focus, requires being still and letting it surface. When it does, though, we seek to get rid of it in some way. For emptiness, like the floater on the eyeball, scares us.
• Grouper: https://sites.google.com/site/yellowelectric