Monday, December 20, 2010

The Gray Swan

Friday last week hubby and I managed to see a late showing of the "Black Swan." Natalie Portman was amazing! And I am not generous with praise; her metamorphosis to the Black Swan provoked me.

Darren Aronofsky's visual story-telling made me ponder the white and black swan in us all. The ballet director kept telling Portman's character that it was easy to be a white swan, but more difficult to become the black swan. To achieve perfection and become the black swan required her to release her inhibitions and let go. Yet the black swan also represented a dark side and we don't consider perfection to be dark, most of us strive to be better which we believe to be light. So is it really more difficult to go to the darker side of ourselves or maintain the facade of the white swan?

The human mind is a complex machine that spins these white and dark issues into comfortable grays that allow us to live. Brilliance requires this balance for sustainability and Portman herself chose to live in the shadows of her character to bring us this on screen experience. To the talented artists who straddle white and black, I pray that you can enjoy the subtle grays that provide rest and joy after a day's labor. You bring us pleasure through your gifts and in return, know you are loved by your audience though we're often in the dark.

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