This is one of the graffiti tags I see everywhere around Binghamton, New York and the surrounding small towns/cities. Its on the side of business buildings, down by the underpasses of the bridges, on the side of railroad cars, the areas near the train tracks, I’ve seen it on the postal card stickers graffiti artists use to post their tags on any unsuspecting urban terrain with ease and stealth. I wonder who this person is, this KASE and why.
The glass is holding something
Its behind my back, I cannot see it
Shattered. It shattered, crack clash I can hear the shards dance over the floor.
A little sliver pierces the bottom of my foot.
Or the side? There is blood.
There is blood everywhere!
When I came home, after I cleaned up the glass after I bandaged my food and cleaned it after
I slept and woke and bathed and went into the world and came back but before
I understood what was going on
There was blood everywhere.
Beauty booty lewdly neutral
my gold coins bear the wrong king’s face
stuck in sand to my neck
I am not a camel
Spit Spat Spite into the pail
Golden skies find eruption
Water scare, fires flair and burn up all the people
Death dotes like a lover.
We must all hold our heads high, humble servants before divine
Only way to justice
Burn my feet and cut my eyes
So I am still and blind
I smell you scent, I lick your skin
Those unwhole are wise
Before I was a mutant being, I was just a doll
Porcelain skin of ivory tusks embodied with live spiders
Spiders crawl and spiders web
Me? I flee destruction.
Message me about the time
We drank our blood together.
“Whenever he walked on the street it turned glass
On his lucky rat’s paw in the crap drawer
All the world’s a stage, where’s the trap door, slackjaw
Logic, to keep your mind in the project”
-MF Doom, Trap Door
Binghamton is full of juxtapositions and paradoxes. In this piece, “Atomic Turtle”, the gray Binghamton sky and urban decrepit rawness make for the perfect apocalyptic environment. But, what is that there? A turtle. Yes, a turtle. This piece speaks to me for two reasons. First, the representation of an atomic explosion is much harder than one would think to capture, and this artist captured it successfully. Secondly, the turtle’s expression is up to interpretation. Is he a separate piece, or is he watching the explosion? His face grimaces a bit. He is a tough turtle.
In Going to Dangerous Areas in Pursuit of Art, I explained why I am willing to put my personal safety at risk to capture obscure works of art in hardcore urban areas. Most of these places have been abandoned for good reasons, its not uncommon for me to find needles, crack pipes, and condoms strewn throughout the places I frequent to monitor any new pieces. I’ve developed a demeanor that others on the street recognize as legitimate; I have indeed spent some time in colorful places and for a time lived a wild lifestyle. Some of us live dangerously because there is beauty in danger, the unknowing and the darkness of places that are beyond the bounds of humanity. There is beauty in the decrepit.
The turtle walks to the atomic explosion, unclear if he sees it or not.