Saturday, June 30, 2007

A Letter and a Monkey

On my porch there are a bunch of unopened boxes that are addressed to my girlfriend Judy c/o me. I have them stacked out there waiting to be boxed and sent to her, in Sydney. Basically they are items she won on ebay and had shipped to me to send I'm a little tardy.

So yesterday I was talking to her to her on the phone and she was asking about a certain package; I went out and started opening some of these boxes. I begin with a large one on top, not noticing the label on the box.
I look inside and I see a toy Monkey with cymbals and a hat...just like the kind I make reference to in my book (its in the section of the Madagascar myth). At this pointI realized that this was not for Judy, but rather for me. I look at the label and sure enough, it's for me. Quickly I pile through the box to find some sort of clue of it's source and "viola" in the very bottom of the box I found the most amazing handwritten letter.

With permission of the author I will post it:

Dear Michael I hope this letter (and gift) finds you in a content and inspired state of being, that it can be used to its fullest potential (I am referring to this gift I packed for you). You do not know me yet, but hopefully now you will. My mother and I read your book; I have to say I love they way it was put together, it was very creative. I appreciated the myths and "Notes from an Alchemist" because I myself, am very interested in magic, fantasy, mystery, myths, etc., although, I'm truly into a darker fantasy world. Like "Phantom of the Opera". When I read that you didn't yet have a "cymbal clapping monkey", and that you would like to have one, I thought of the one from "Phantom of the Opera" that sat in the cage at the circus, clapping its hands in a very haunting manner. I just had to get it, because it reminded me of that monkey. But don't let it haunt you, Let it inspire you. Aso, remember: don't feed it after midnight, and it has to avoid bright lights (all the same rules from "Gremlins". If you haven't seen the movie you won't know the rules). Caution: don't let the sight on the box that reads - Requires 2 D batteries,- fool you, it's a tricky thing. My mother and I love your work, and I am now trying to make pieces more like yours. I would truly like , well, my mom and I would truly like to take one of your workshops. Personally, I'd just love a reason to go to Montana, anyway. I've always wanted to go there. Tell me next time you're teaching there, if you are, and I'll try to come. It'll have to be ciao for now, but remember, please, whatever you do, don't feed it it after midnight; street peddlers know what they're talking about; they sent me the list of the rules, but I have seemed to misplaced it. I'll call you if I find it. I'll call you if I find it. Some day my mother aspires to own one of your pieces. She is also a fan.
-Kiah Goldman

Sometimes, if you're lucky, something happens that reminds you that the universe can be an amazingly beautiful place. In my case, this box and this letter reminded me of the real reason I create art and that is to find my humanity and to help me connect with others on this planet. In the hustle and bustle of the day, it is quite easy to forget the most important things in life. Thanks Kiah for refreshing my memory, and thanks for your kindness. This gift will have always have very special place of honor in my home.



Elaine Kerr said...

My little neighbourhood friend was terrified of my jumping monkey...maybe it was the noisy cymbals. I don't think I ever really liked it that much either, too rigid a body to hug. His BC Lions football helmet was a bit too small to really fit him properly. (I think they won the Grey Cup that year, I dunno – hate football.)Football monkey, no wonder I didn't like him! ; } I wonder if he still works?

craftyhala said...

It's great that you got the're a very special person to so many.
I kinda/sorta recently discovered Judy's blog and make it a daily stop now and that's how I discovered yours. Before that for me, you were just "that guy" (sorry), however now you are Michael, someone to watch.
Now I wanna take one of your classes some day.

Anonymous said...

How cool is that?

nina said...

you are a blessed man, michael demeng, michael demeng. xoxoxoxoxo

Laurie Mika said...

HI Michael,
I hope you didn't feed the monkey after midnight! That was really sweet of her to actually send that to you. ( I have to confess, the thought crossed my mind to send you a monkey, but then that's as far as it got!!) Hope you have a great summer, mine has been wonderful so far, just back from must add that to your itinerary for the future!
Take care,
your buddy, Laurie

kathy mc said...

What a great, thoughtful and cool gift. You haved touched many lives with your art. You are an amazing artist.