Shouting off a cliff

I don’t have any pictures (yet) but Carrie Purcell and I read at Pilot Books on Friday night.  Despite the rain, Carrie brought many friends and I brought family and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.  We went out to Vermillion afterwards, and it might be my new favorite place on Capitol Hill.  With a gallery in the front it has the feel of a speakeasy, the bar tucked into the dark brick beyond white walls.  There’s a jukebox and plenty of mac and cheese, tables to move around and music that doesn’t smother conversation.

In lui of photos of the evening, here’s some new art (thanks to my new scanner!) I’m not sure that it’s finished yet, but I wanted to post something.

beetle-mountain

Also, keep an eye on elimae, new work of mine will be appearing in November.

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Hearts.

Though in general I’m not a fan of Valentine’s day, beyond making glittery collages for my girl friends, this is sort of wonderful.  I’ve heard nice things about Dancing Girl Press from Kate Durbin, and I just purchased a few books from the winter sale.  I don’t know anything about the authors, but I’m still excited for the books to get here.  

I do need to get out and buy some glitter though, so that my lovely lady friends can have glitter explosions in their mailboxes around the 14th.  If you want a valentine, send me your address!  The last real valentine flurry I sent was while I was at Moravian College.  I gave one to my friend Tim and (though I don’t know I told him this) I panicked after I put it in the drop box, thinking I’d written the wrong box number.  I kept checking by the mailboxes until I saw it appear through the glass and I broke into the box to take it out.  After running upstairs to the information desk and checking the number I found I’d done it right in the first place, and sheepishly broke back into the box to put it back.  Later Moravian put guards on the mailboxes and we couldn’t card into them anymore.  Safer all around, but I would have been a wreck, watching through impenetrable glass the glued and collaged valentine slanted against the metal post box walls.

of language

Brambles at the mailbox

The mailbox sky minus the crows

At the end of an errands run, as I walked back to my aunt’s house, I saw quite the murder of crows above me.  More and more flew above, streaking the sky black and headed to a cardinal direction I ought to know but don’t. [I find myself easily lost, headed west when I should go north, finding the ocean at my back when I meant to dip into it. ]  At the tangle of brambles and berries on the triangle of land by the mailboxes a woman and a little boy peered both up and forward.  She was more captivated by the birds, he by the bushes.  I’m not sure if they were picking berries,  but that’s what it seemed like.  As I picked up the mail the woman said “They’ve been flying above for the past ten minutes, I don’t know where they’re going.”  Though she was probably talking to the little boy, I answered yes, they had been and that I’d been watching them for a while as I walked.  She smiled at me, but I felt like I’d interrupted.  As I walked away I heard the boy saying “Crow. Want me to tell you the Latin root?”

I find it frustrating that I don’t know more languages.  I have a smattering of French, a bit of Itallian, and I can fake my way through Spanish text, but I’m at a loss at truly understanding a language besides English.  Though I’ve felt the loss of language, it was most poignant when I read an article that my mother gave me for my birthday: The Vital Heat, The Inborn Pneuma and the Aether.  The article is bound with blue paper and has been cut out of whatever journal it came from, so the only citation I can give is that it is written by Friedrich Solmsen, from Cornell University, sometime after 1948.  In it, Solmsen quotes direct sources without translating.  “Πασης μεν ουν ψυχης…” and so forth.  Though of course even this is a mis-translation, ignoring accent marks that I’m sure change the entire meaning of words.  He uses phrases such as “clearly,” and “as shown by” without making much clear or shown.  The fault is not his, but my own.  

I want to know texts, and know them in their original form.  Translations can be beautiful, but something is lost.  Of course, one can argue that someting is gained as well, that the text becomes a collage instead of an ink drawing.  There are layers of translated text, translator, original author; text that is made of the cracks, crevices, platueas and mountains that occur when two languages are asked to combine and convey the same thing.  

In this way, the journal projects I work on are like translations of text.  Growing out of multiple locations, the texts ideally begin to weave together and create something that, alone, would be impossible.

An articulated space

Hazel's Flowers

Air Mail

I seem to be suspending a lot lately.  I can’t help but love the delicate threads suspending a bit of postcard within a larger postcard/watercolor.  I don’t know if they will survive the mail, but of course I’ll try.  The threads may be caught, the paper torn, the colors bleed… but what is the point of holding onto the spaces myself?