Tag Archive | scraps

the worst is yet to come

 

A threat

to the immense tracts of forest

that ring the Northern Hemisphere

grim proof

the worst is yet to come.

 

Vast stands of spruce and other resinous trees

the resinous trees of the boreal zone

become more susceptible to fire

intense fires that are nearly impossible to control.

 

Forest fires are a natural part

of the history of the forest

but records

suggest they may be reaching an unnatural level of frequency and intensity.

 

“We’re kind of at a crossroads.

“We anticipate more fires, and more intense fires, in the future.”

 

The forests return to the atmosphere.

 

Fig: Yet to Come

firestag_crop

 

 

text excavated from here.

–The Odalisque

 

happy new year (4)

Last night we celebrated the end of my FOURTH year in the obelisk.

Today, my head is crossed and quartered call it a head-ache.  Too much elder-flower wine.  Sambucas Canadensis have you tried it?  It’s one of the flowers the black swan brings and a batch I began when I first moved here was uncorked yesterday.

I have a head-ache, today, which is Imbolc, the cross-quarter day.  Imbolc means:  we’re half-way to the equinox!

Is it a coincidence that I moved into the obelisk on a cross-quarter day?

Yes.  It was only a coincedence that I moved into the obelisk half way between solstice and equinox.

But is the coincidence  meaningless?

I decide it is not meaningless.  I thank my inside-self who was, it seems, attuned to the turning earth, though conscious odalisque had no idea.  I have grown wiser in four years and when things coincide, choose to honor them.

It was right about now, half-way between the longest night  and some kind of light/dark balance, that I got the bright idea to move into an obsidian tower.  I saw it, as I stood on the shore, far across the salt-marsh.

My pagan ancestors celebrated with Imbolc the maiden.  So do I, sequestered here in black grounded stone, whole unto myself.

Here is one of my favorite scrapbook portraits EVER, of me celebrating my inner maiden:Odalisque portrait as a young girlThis new year, rather than list my favorite posts of the past (I like this one and this one and this dream song  but Owl complained that I didn’t make enough scrapbook pages here.) I thought I’d stick in some of the scrapbook pages I never finished.  Something to look forward to in the coming year?  Will I manage to contextualize and complete them?

 

 

 

of late

My scrapbook, of late, has looked like this:

notebookpaper - horizontal lines

Lines.  Pale blue lines.  Blank paper.  With lines.

Having spent most of my life in works of art, I know all about lines:

Horizontal lines suggest a feeling of rest or repose because objects parallel to the earth are at rest. Horizontal lines delineate sections which recede into space.  The lines imply continuation of the picture plane to the left and right.  [Elements of Art]

Please orient your screen so every line is parallel to the earth.

notebookpaper - horizontal lines

Do you feel rest do you feel repose?

Imagine the lines extend out of your screen, infinite continuation, left and right.   Let’s walk towards the blank paper’s beginning.  Or do you prefer its end?

Maybe these horizontal lines do not begin or end, but circle like latitude lines.  We walk inside a column of paper, round and round.  The white space, delineated, recedes.

Here I am, stuck in the middle of a cyllindrical blank-paper drum.

Hit my head, see if I thrum.

Turning the page the other way changes things a bit:

notebookpaper - vertical lines

Vertical lines often communicate a sense of height because they are perpendicular to the earth, extending upwards toward the sky. Vertical lines suggest spirituality, rising beyond human reach toward the heavens.  [Elements of Art]

My obelisk is a very strong vertical line rising from the earth’s horizontal plane.  I’ve conveniently positioned myself between heaven and earth.  I don’t want to ascend any further (like the birds) or go down to the shore.  I like it right here.  For now.  I can see the sky and I can see the shore and the birds come into visit, bringing seeds and grasses from the out-of-doors.  I open my window.  The wind carries in its light arms molecules of pollen and salt.

Would you rather face heaven, earth or a the delineated white page?

Of late, I’ve shown my back to the conceptual page, and faced my little world.  The kettle’s on!  We’ve buns for tea!  The weather is unseasonable, but the starlings will flap their wings to create a gusty breeze so phoenix can blaze pleasantly for the rest of us.  The warm weather has made black swan molt.  I’m collecting the downy feathers to stuff a new bed.  Crow has flown north on the annual spiritual strengthening retreat, but will return on the solstice, through my new niche (remember my solstice niche?)  May crow return as crow, not parrot.  What celestial bodies must I implore to bring that about?  I don’t know who crow listens to, so I implore crow:  be black black crow, not flashy parrot.  Stop asking me where I am going.

Hawk is reading Adorno.  Eyeing the ethereal blue lines on the blank pages I’ve taped one-by-one to the obsidian walls, Hawk quoth thus:

In her text, the writer sets up house.  Just as she trundles papers, books, pencils, documents untidily from room to room, she creates the same disorder in her thoughts.  They become pieces of furniture that she sinks into, content or irritable.  She strokes them affectionately, wears them out, mixes them up, re-arranges, ruins them.  For a woman who no longer has a homeland, writing becomes a place to live.  In it she inevitably produces, as her family once did, refuse and lumber.  But now she lacks a store-room, and it is hard in any case to part from left-overs.  So she pushes them along in front of her, in danger finally of filling her pages with them.

..In the end, the writer is not even allowed to live in her writing.  [II.Memento, Minima Moralia: Reflections from Damaged Life]

I hope you bear well the shortening days!  We’ll celebrate the turning very soon.

‘Till then,

–The Odalisque

I look out my window

I look out my window.  The moon is inside.

 

 

The veil is thin.

 

–The Odalisque

 

(can’t see the movie?  try here.)

mooning

I know.

I did not make an equinox page.  Did you miss it?

Here we are again.  Dark days.  I mean nights.  I mean LONG nights.

They are coming.

I’m depressed.

Maybe I should move closer to the equator so I don’t have to go through this every year.  Otherwise, I’ll have to go back to being an unravished bride of happiness, i.e., art.  Oh happy happy art!  Music unheard is sweetest and in truth, beauty such as an odalisque’s may be eternally still, fading century-by-century to fall at last in entropic decay.

You may have noticed I don’t make so many scrapbook pages anymore.  At first it was so exciting to be out and about in my own obelisk.  But everything passes so fast.  Like starlings sweeping the sky time is, a hypnotist, and I, Odalisque, am hypnotized, with a soft focus dream-floating in all the flux.  Why stamp myself upon this flux of time?   Why afix myself to the pseudo-permanent?  Why art?

I miss crow.  Parrot-that-is-crow doesn’t talk anymore, doesn’t ask me where I’m going.  It’s obvious to all us birds that TIME is what’s going.  It’s a sensation, round and round.  Parrot is plucking her own feathers.  Maybe beneath all that caricature will step my black crow.

Crow would know how to party in this mad, strung-out scene.  We’re all exhausted and too paranoid to  get out o <f/i>n time.

eq2015_owlhereeq2015_oisstupid

OWL HERE.

ODALISQUE IS STUPID.

ODALISQUE!eq2015_become

YOU HAVE SOMEWHERE OR WHO TO BE

THERE IS A PLACE TO ARRIVE AT IT IS NOW TO BECOMEeq2015_mooning   owl_signature

 

 

 

My face is like the moon /the night grows long /long reign of moon.

Don’t moon about.  Wane.  So you can see the stars.

Here we go again.

It never stops does it.

 

–The Odalisque

 

 

 

 

 

pre/se/rve || e

August, die she must, minute by minute.   The hour, in July, appointed for tea now lingers too late for dinner to be prepared before dark.   Rush I must to get myself fed without burning some light.  Like most of my birds, I prefer to be active in sunlight; as the days shorten I slowly become overwhelmed by routines and chores, my working hours constricted. Imagine how most birds feel–fewer minutes each day in which to find their requisite calories.

I say “most” because though Hawk’s hunting days are waning, Owl’s are on the rise.  Owl looks forward to the equinox when time-dominion tilts in favor of Owl.   Owl pities Hawk, who had hunting good when the weather was gentle and pleasant.  When hunting is hard, and most necessary, Owl has time.   Hawk shrugs.  Always, somehow, Hawk, also, stays alive.

In Owl-time I will have to attune myself to other productivities, the less active and quickly satisfying.  The obelisk will be grimier but in dark Winter I’ll hardly be able to tell.  As long as I can keep the window clean, to let what light there is in.  I’ll remember how to attune to other chores, tasks of the mind cupping itsself around a dim candle, confronting cold space, recalling how to preserve, a word which looks an awful lot like “persevere”.  I will remember how to persevere.

handwriting_preserveperservere

Why do I worry for winter?  Now is summer, late summer, to be sure, but the flowers all blowsy, gold, purple and white, the colors of royalty.  August is an august time, leonine.  Nature, regally bedecked, processes nobly towards decline.

These days are pleasure-full.

I just paused to appreciate that fact–NOW is pleasure-FULL–and bright crow-who-is-parrot (I’m so sick of parrot, repeating himself), landed on the sill, dropping a red feather.

I like collecting the birds’ feathers.  I pick it up.

first_leaf_of_fallIt is not a feather.

Parrot-who-is-Crow brought me a leaf.

The first autumn leaf.

–The Odalisque

 

 

fiddle-head

so silent odalisque.  long empty pie pieces sliced by solar time: solstice to equinox to solstice to equinox.  a big sun-cross with silent sweeps in between.  every circle is a year.

this silent sweep is avril, the cruelest month, eliot said.  plants don’t want to be buried they pull themselves, pale, embryonic un-dead, out of the earth.  marsh goes from gold to green again, the water is not summer blue or winter black but a sheeny-silver murk, faintly pink.   my room is cold then perfect perfect warm then hot then cold again in just one day as the sun slips in and out of window frame.  birds build nests of straw and trash.  i leave shreds of scrapbook paper on the sill for them to take.  scrapbook shreds pad nests.

now is not a time i want to eat eggs.

i want to eat…green shoots as they curl out of the ground.  big bowls, before they toughen too much in the sun.  how crisp and fresh these young sprouts.   they snap between teeth,  taste of minerals, essence of dirt firmed in cellulose and sweetened with chemystred  light  .  radish asparagus lotus root  fiddle-head fern.  young and crisply fibrous.

i am no spring sprout.  i am a fruit not yet fermented to wine, but late-season, heavy and odorous.

i plump myself on fresh spring greens.  the birds pile them on the sill.  maybe in exchange for the nesting material, or maybe just because they  like to feed me.  because they care.

–The Odalisque

steps

steps1-2-3

 

 

steps-1

 

Don’t force.  Little things.  Days.  Hay the heap in which pricker lost,  scintillant sharp-eye.

Pay attention.  A haystack is a stack of needles. Needles of hay.  Stop scouring gold for cold steel.

 

 

 

 

 

steps-2Transmission weak and flatulent, slack-jawed lines on a pole poorly buried.  No electrical ground.

Engage the operative.  Draw the lines taut and subtle like muscle tissue like sinew bow strings, foreleg of deer drawn taut to down the fleeing deer.

The deer enables the hunter.  Without her there is no hunt<h>er.

Or is there?  Her taut-strung sinews string his lyre.  Therefore, he thinks, they commune.

 

steps-3No rest always a space simple let it fill itself with play.

Head too heavy to lift up?

Look down, upon reflective surfaces.

Try cans of spent motor oil.  Try backside of spoons.   Try sphericals.   Try eyes of adoring animals.  Try shiny-ing your shoes.

bellyful of light

owl_handwriting_owlagainHELLO.

ODALISQUE IS POOR SCRAPBOOK MAKER THESE DAYS.

DO YOU KNOW WHY?

OWL KNOWS WHY.

OWL TAKES HATS FROM SIMPLE RUNNING FOLK TO WEIGH DOWN ODALISQUE BRAIN.

TO NO AVAIL.

COLD IT IS AND HARD TO FLY.

OWL WANTS STARLING FOR FOOD.

ODALISQUE SAYS NO.

BUT STARLINGS ARE SO MANY AND OWL ONLY ONE.  WHY NOT EAT A STARLING, ODALISQUE?  WARM STARLING BLOOD SQUIRTS THICK IN OWL GULLET.

ODALISQUE SCOWLS AT UNCIVILIZED OWL.

STARLINGS MAKE PICTURES IN THE SKY.  STARLINGS SWARM.  STARLINGS TWITTER UP DAWN  FEED ON MARSH GRASSES THAT FEED ON LIGHT.  STARLINGS, SOMETIMES, WEAR HATS, AND ARE FASHIONABLE.  STARLINGS LIKE OWL FLY.

OWL SEES FROM OBELISK LAND BLISTERING COLD.  STARVED.

FEED ME FEATHERS FED ON GRASS THAT ON THE SUN FEEDS.

NOCTURNAL OWL SEEKS SUNLIGHT
SOLAR FUEL POWERS NIGHTLY FLIGHT.
SUN IS STAR WHOSE LIGHT OWL EATS
IN BIRD AND MOUSE FROM BLADE AND SEED,
ODALISQUE, IN CUSHIONED NIGHT
OWL WINGS ARE QUIET, OWL CLAWS PRECISE.
OWL IS UNCIVIL, OWL DOES NOT SLEEP
OWL HUNTS FOR LIFE TO ON LIGHT FEED.

owl_signature

 

 

 

crow morphology (she)

what lies beneath?

Side 2, Groove 4: [audible]

the stones memorialize the stones entomb

the stones are the threshold through which the beginning embarks upon its end

the stones are the threshold through which the end returns where it began.

the stones’ mass warps the field so that  a journeyer setting out in any direction with any goal will quest his way back to them.  the stones.

above hawk soars scanning the damp field for food.

below, a burial ground of childish things. let the rapture resurrect them with child-like wisdom.

to the east a wild horse, spiral horned, departs through the shell shellac of dawn, in search of dark.

to the north, crow remains always crow for the wolves are hungry but easily outsmarted.

to the west a stag retreats in the deep blossom of the ever-dying sun.

to the south a pleasure garden, fragrant and fruitful, walled with fire.

in the middle a stone laid on its side maybe toppled maybe placed that way who knows? and what matter?

she sits there, in her afternoon gown.

Cursus, too heavy to speak, cotton-mouthed and miserable, drags himself towards her.

The toppled stone is not hers, but she has done her best to dress its dark mourning for pleasant repast.  here find flowers grown in the pot of her hand, basalt for three, silver spoons to hold tongues in place, claw-edged tongs to pick words, desiccated lumps of sugar, from his dry mouth.

She has her pitcher of cream, and knives, too for piercing or spreading thin.

Cursus heaves himself upright and collapses on his table.

his mouth is parched but his heart is drowning.

she says:

crowmorph_she_qtrszcrowmorph_she_txt

Intro to  Crow Morphology.

Previous Groove.

crow morphology (blurbs)

crowmorph_record

savor the strangeness.

Side 2, Groove 2: [audible]

 

crowmorph_castleblurb_qtrsz

Castle to making art found as soot and burnt paper.  Drawings, texts, and handmade books all untitled.  Artists look at life, bear lyrical remembrance, fix time/narrative, now/the self, use print to produce highly romanticized portraits, indelible relationships between past and present, people and everyday objects…

That trouble real can do a lot of damage.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 Intro to  Crow Morphology.

Previous Groove

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