A while back I received an email relating to my Salome post. It was asking did I happen to have any other drawings I could post from the same set. As it happens, I have one or two done at about the same time, though not part of the series to which Salome belonged.
Then came another email saying that the writer had been surfing and had come upon the drawings in question. Furthermore, he had decided that one of the drawings was an illustration to Isaiah. He was not speaking of my blog, but a much older web site which I had thought defunct, not having been able to access it for a few weeks. And indeed, he then went on to say that he seemed no longer able to access it.
The following day I received a third email from another surfer who had hit upon my With Eyes Tight Shut (and here posts and was asking did it ever happen that when I closed my eyes I would see detailed naturalistic images which were not just memories of actual events or objects? Well, yes, as a matter of fact the drawing my previous emailer had thought was an illustration for Isaiah was just such an image seen - very vividly, as it happened - when I had closed my eyes on one occasion. It asked something else, too: do I have any theories about the connection, or lack of connection, between the images we see with our eyes closed and those we see in dreams?
Again, yes, though whether it is enough of a theory to satisfy my friend, I am not sure. I suffer from tinnitus, have done so ever since I went deaf in one ear. The consultant told me it was because the main aural nerve has been destroyed, either by a virus or a blood clot. No signals are reaching that ear, but nature, as they say, abhors a vacuum, so provides spontaneous signals. I guess it might be something similar when we close our eyes, although I realise that it cannot be that simple, as there are no complete images stored in the brain. One part deals with straight lines, another with curves, another with corners and so forth. So there must be some organising influence at work. Whether my "theory" suggests a connection or a lack of connection, I am not sure. The fact that I do sometimes see moving images might help the connection hypothesis.
So, the image above is (was) simply a recreation of a vivid image seen with my eyes closed. I say "was" because my emailing friend has not been the only one to associate it with Isaiah. A Methodist Minister friend once suggested that it would make an excellent illustration for Isaiah 3 16-26 which is concerned with the wanton luxury of women, which I found difficult to follow, for there is no wanton luxury attaching to the figures in my drawing. Doreen (my wife) does not like this image because she saw such images during a traumatic period of hallucinations caused by bacterial meningitis.
The image below is one from my (rather crude and naive) anti-war period.