I made a new friend yesterday!!! After a long month home-bound like a hermit typing a paper for my past PhD deadline, I needed to be out and about and back to my old harmless urban mischiefs to recover my sanity (hence why I put “semi-retired " street activist on my profile!).
Off I went and bought a small set of sticky labels, got my black marker, and scribbled away a few confessions to get off my chest. I strolled around Camden to give them away, I stumbled upon this guy, he was writing poetry in the sidewalk with multicolored chalk (I was hooked!) and then I saw he had a phrase in Spanish written in his bag, "Respira Consciente”, which means breath consciously (double hooked!) so I HAD to speak to him.
Turns out he doesn’t speak Spanish, he picked that phrase from a woman in the Canary islands. He is a wanderer, his name is Hymn. We had a chat about what he was writing (I love poetry but the PhD doesn’t leave much room for leisure reading), words, poetry, art, his travels… I told him about how I missed my urban tribe of street activist and artists. He loved my stickers, picked two to put them in his hat (in both I am confessing I am a BRUJA -witch in Spanish-, the one he is holding says “Soy BRUJA, Y que?”). Fun encounter. I walked away with this fragment of his poetry stuck in my mind:
If you love the life
it will love you back
that’s the truth of it
that’s a fact
We bumped fists and said see you around!
I left a couple more stickers on my way back. The one over the Camden Fringe program says “I NEVER bathe on Sundays”, and the one over the man’s face says “I See dead people SERIOUSLY”. :)
Imagine my surprise when I checked his facebook page (everyone has a Facebook fan page these days…): there’s a documentary about him released in 2015. If you are curious, check the website and facebook page for screenings.