Photo Blog by Mark I Chester
Mark I Chester studio  1229 Folsom St./SF  415-6294
all images are 2011 Mark I Chester

December 7, 2011


photo of the day 12/7/2011. photographer unknown but it might be Cal Yeomans or one of his friends. This is a holiday card I received from Cal Yeomans in 1986. Cal was a gay playwright, poet and writer whose work included gay men and gay sexuality. If you don't know who Cal Yeomans is, you should. Check out the recent book by Robert Schanke on Cal.

I often watch TV while I am doing grunt work on the computer. One show I enjoyed was John Edwards' "Crossing Over." This is the medium who claims he sees images from those who have passed over and then passes messages from them to the living. Whether he actually hears those who have passed or whether it is some kind of scam, it was entertaining.

It was a strange time, as it was less than 2 months after 9/11, so that everything felt very intense. There was no escape from the intensity, no matter what you did or where you went. And then weird thing started happening. When I watched Crossing Over, I was racked by waves of sorrow and would just start crying for no reason at all. It had never happened before watching the show and it had never happened at any other time of day or night. I was so struck by the intensity of the emotions that I was feeling that I wrote emails to friends about it. This went on for a week or more and then it just stopped.

I didn't think anything more about it until months later when I received an email from Bruce McCoy telling me that Cal had passed away months ago. And then I remembered those instances where I had broken down without any reason. I checked the dates from the emails I wrote and they coincided with Cal's passing. I can't tell you what any of this means except that somehow on some level, I think I knew that Cal had passed. Or that I could feel that he had passed. Or that his spirit was visiting me to say goodbye. Who knows? So much of the universe is just a mystery that can only leave us wondering at the strange beauty that is what we call life .... and death.