Chrysalis

The caterpillar releases its gastric juices into its own flesh, turning itself into a liquid in order to reconfigure into the butterfly. [1]Ferris Jabr, “How Does a Caterpillar Turn into a Butterfly?”, Scientific American, Munn & Co., New York: August 10, 2012, … Continue reading It’s an overused symbol, which is perfect since everything felt old and overused as we were stuck in the middle. Transformation is often like that. A divorce, getting fired, a diagnosis crashes into our lives. We hope it will leave with the same speed as it arrived, like a wind blowing past us, but more often than not, we get caught in a whirlwind, in the middle of the washing machine. People tend to focus on the beautiful outcome of the butterfly, in the hope that everything will be okay, but the goalpost keeps moving. On Friday March 13 2020, I stayed home, everyone stayed home. It was the first day of shelter-in-place of the covid 19 pandemic. We were asked to wait two weeks. The duct tape repair isn’t as temporary as we thought it would be. The idea of hope wears down and we find ourselves face to face with the uncomfortable present. 

Chrysalis is a short screenplay about transformation. I was comforted by the connection between personal shocks and this global shock. It consists of two parts, a dialogue between two friends and a section stolen from the old and overused Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll when Alice speaks to the caterpillar smoking a hookah. [2] Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures Underground, London, UK, British Library, 1893, p.51-52, https://www.bl.uk/works/alices-adventures-in-wonderland, accessed May 31, 2022. Where many of the images represent transformation, in this script the two friends discuss transformation in every tangent their casual conversation takes. They gossip about Alice, who is inside a chrysalis, self-digesting. The dialogue referencing transformation would be juxtaposed to images representing it such as those in Audiovisual Sketch Series | Winter 2019 or Audiovisual Sketch Series | Summer 2021

Ellen Cushing, “Late-Stage Pandemic Is Messing With Your Brain”, The Atlantic, Washington, D.C., March 2021, https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2021/03/what-pandemic-doing-our-brains/618221/, accessed on May 5, 2021.

We had to hold on for two weeks, and two months later it felt like there was no end in sight, because it wasn’t in sight. Years later, the faded paint chips off an old rainbow sign still hanging off the side of a balcony has lost its lustre. 

References

References
1 Ferris Jabr, “How Does a Caterpillar Turn into a Butterfly?”, Scientific American, Munn & Co., New York: August 10, 2012, https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/caterpillar-butterfly-metamorphosis-explainer/, accessed on May 5, 2022.
2 Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures Underground, London, UK, British Library, 1893, p.51-52, https://www.bl.uk/works/alices-adventures-in-wonderland, accessed May 31, 2022.

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