Fly Free, Roam Far

As a child I was repelled by the cruelty of fly paper which attracts, then traps insects onto a sticky surface where they eventually succumb as they struggle to free themselves.

This image of flies stuck on paper is a metaphor for human temptation. In contrast with insects, humans are often aware of the risks and dangers that lay ahead, yet despite this, we continue to act in ways that are certain to result in our downfall.

The fly paper represents the dangers that face us, emotionally and practically. The fly paper of war, conflict, abuse, of preventable disease. The dangers of the self, of others, and of nature.

Humans have the capacity to see the risks ahead but often fail to act.

The fly paper of climate change... of the field of battle... the tablecloth where excess food is placed... the slab that holds the dust of drugs that lead to darkness and despair... the counter where a single drink of wine becomes another, then another, then another... The bank note that I sacrifice my day to live for... And as the fly, I cannot help but take the bait and land upon the paper that is sure to signal my demise.

Fly free
Roam far
I see it sure as northern star

I know its risk
But more, its charm

What harm can be to land but once
To meet this place, with appetite
What consequence

An extract from the full size artwork follows.