Q: What do you have to say about "yellowing" and what is it?
Brett: "Yellowing" is a current project, going on at the same time as "Tracey".
Q: They may be two projects but they're not quite clear to those that don't know what they're about, are they?
Brett: Well, they're extremly clear to me. Yellowing is my current book - I'm making a book, with typed words, hand-written words, drawings, collage, painting... It's very personal, very straight-talking. And there are funny bits. And Tracey is an ongoing project avec Campbell, which will burst eardrums.
Q: And what's the relevance of the photo? And what is the Tracey project?
Brett: Tracey's a secret. The photo is about concentration - as in focus and quality. It's the kitchen of a place I lived in the high Himalayas. I was focused on writing with the fire crackling and heavy rain pouring outside. It's an elemental place. Basic's my favourite way of being. It seems to bear rich fruit.
Q: What's this comment you made about not wanting anyone to ask you "why" or "what" questions? Rather limiting, wouldn't you say?
Brett: I'm fed up with people asking why and what? If you're asking that stuff, shut-up! Shut-up and listen from all of you that is not ears. Can't you hear through your skin? It's meant to be your biggest sense organ. Cut the words and listen. Silence has more to tell than a million words.
Q: How are you feeling about words?
Brett: I'm not that interested in just words at the moment. They're too one dimensional. If a stone rolls back to enter a cave, I'm more into the sensation than the description of it in words. That said, they're pretty good for getting the point across. But there are swarms of words in the world and most of them are pointless. Words with visuals, a voiceover on a film -- that's currently a more juicy area than straight text.
Q: What is the point of Brett Campbell?
Brett: Ask Campbell.
Q: And what is the point of Brett Campbell?
Brett: To answer all that is asked about and all that is not. And to show how life really is.
Heaven is beautiful. I'm enjoying it very much. But there is not frost, or sunshine - because all that is just is. So it's kind of like custard, with everything that you've ever loved in it. Which is all very nice, but sometimes I do crave that sweet smell of a daises in springtime, you know?
What I really crave from earth is the sight of trees. You know how much I love their branches, especially the way, when you get really close to them, they WHISPER EVERYTHING they've got to say to you, in that way that makes your head just rest against their trunks, because to be any other way with them would be dishonourable?
Shhh.... say their leaves. The breeze is their translator. Ok, I've always said. I have nothing to say. My words are just noise. And then they start to speak. When you understand that, and they speak into your belly and legs and arms like a million tiny spiders putting down anchors inside your limbs and it's the most precious feeling on earth. Except it's more precious than that.
All the sea has flooded you and you cannot distinguish salt from skin from gulls' cries and sweet country guitar strings. "Play my feet," I whisper to the trees. And they laugh and they laugh and they laugh and say:
Don't be so daft.
For when I was dying, and for those who are thinking about it
When all the world scuttles, when your feet are limp and your heart beats through your head, and your head is full and limp at the same time, and you think you are going to die, remember my hand, as soft as sunlight on leaves, hushing your pulse, saying just go up to where it's open and there's no need to die now. There's no need to die now.
We choose when we die.
Sometimes. It depends on the circumstances. But both times I thought I was going to die, I didn't because there was a very little strong flame that kept burning the dark. And it smoked and it smoked and it smoked, as if I were underground in a black chamber where only the smoke was light; like - now I can see - your laughter when it's all dark.
I did think I was dying, because I was. And you held my feet, and kept me from shooting off. Because there are people here I love, and I'm not ready to die. Not yet. I mean, I know I'll never "die". That doesn't exist. But for peope here; if I'm not in my body, I'm not here.