In lore, seafaring men catch albatross for sport—and the albatross let them. Writhing on these ships and shores, these prisons and deathbeds, diminishes the birds to common creatures. The albatross lives in you and me; we feel the besieged bird in the balance sought in daily life. “Soar! Soar!” the Master commands, yet in soaring, the artist relinquishes rationality and reason for fairy tales, strife, and inexplicable genius unfettered by the domesticating reins of society.

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