The Public Journal exists because I have the desire to connect with you.

The journal is an attempt to deconstruct my barriers.

The journal is an ongoing series of writings on any topic.

The journal is an exercise in telling my truth.

The journal stems from reality and from fantasy alike.

The journal takes the form of letters or essays or photographs or poems.

The journal is sent through the internet.

The journal is, at times, an object sent through the mail.

The journal may be forwarded to anyone you think might enjoy or detest receiving it.

 

 

To receive The Public Journal, email me at

pescochrane at gmail dot com 

and I will send you all entries to date and all entries in the future.

 

 

An excerpt from The Public Journal 5 — Salome:

 

[. . .]

"It was the Barberini Faun, known more obtusely as the Drunken Satyr, which caught my eye and made my pants feel all funny in class. A Hellenistic sculpture of the third or second century BC, the reclining nude of Greek and then Roman lore was rediscovered at the bottom of the moat surrounding the Castel Sant’Angelo in Rome in the 1600s. He made his way into the water by way of defenestration: a heavy weapon dropped from up high on the invading Visigoths during the sack of Rome in 547 AD. On the way down, my beloved lost his right leg, his hands, his left foot, and parts of his head. Luckily for me, the goods stayed intact, and as marble is a synonym for Italy, the rest of him was lovingly restored by my hero, Pope Urban VIII.

I can close my eyes and see myself—a shy boy with hair that falls down his back, features still too big for his changing face—sitting in the windowless room of my art history course, opening the 11th edition of Gardner’s Art through the Ages (with the equally queer and effeminate Young Man with a Book portrait by Bronzino adorning the cover, which I later spotted at the end of a hallway in the Met and floated to with the surreal lilt of a waking dream during my solo trip to New York in my early twenties), casually flipping to the dog-eared page containing the sleeping faun. He was discussed in passing, another contested statue in the Greek-or-Roman-copy debate, and passed over again as if he were some paltry rendition of a senator or vainglorious nobleman. But here, in the spread legs and in the contours of a sleeping man carved from the Earth itself, I had found something entirely new.

I close my eyes and see this younger, quieter, timid apparition. I see how hollow he is inside—how afraid, how soft. I see the faint spark and hear the scratch from stone striking flint deep within his guts. No true ignition; no fire. Nothing to draw unwanted attention.

Still.

The naked man was an object I was trained to fear. Look for too long and ridicule or violence came my way. In the locker room, at the pool, on the field, or while watching TV, staring straight into the ground was the only safe choice. Even so, leering gestures and shouts reached my back. Fear was my guiding force. Temptation lead to the hell created by humans—the one that exists without question here in the everyday. I didn’t need a false mouthpiece of God spitting hate behind a podium to know that the reality we walk through can be riddled with terror. Not when existing and speaking my truth could mean torture or death. No, desire was a feature I worked against as the mouse tries to escape the grip of the snake by biting its head, its eyes, its body.

For the first time my gaze was met. I took him in and held him in my mind without shame. The authors of this book had called him art, but for me he was liberation."

[. . .]


The Public Journal 2