Thursday, May 29, 2008

Cardiac Cycle

a sample: Sonnet 1 of 8

I. Semilunar valve closure

the line traces paths through darkened forests
ripples and valleys of flesh, breath pushed out
as if swimming underwater: there is no way back,
only the well of hot blood pulling me onwards.

now I see you in the doorway:
shape sensed by smell, slow thud
of music pushing us together. the heat
of our hands touch, slide

burn and you turn
to trace my curves with your tongue
run hands over grooves in my nascent body

I fold within the hollow of your chest.
this is only the beginning.
this is where we will end.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The Night Before the Transplant

Well, Metonymy wrapped up on the weekend.... it was a great experience. Cat and I made work that we were both really proud of. Our installation was entitled The Night Before the Transplant (you can see it above - the huge floor to ceiling stretched netting thing). It had a really spooky soundtrack as well but you can't see that. And that's a real X-ray box with used dissecting tools on it. We also made a book of poetry, Cardiac Cycle, a cycle of sonnets based on the events taking place in the human heart between the space of two heartbeats.

It was a really interesting experience working with a fine arts graduate like Cat, because she could guide me through the thought processes of an artist. Which have many parallels to that of a poet, but the differences and similarities are sometimes not what you'd expect. For example, I didn't realise, obvious though it now seems, that artists go through a drafting and editing process, just like writers. Also we found that our thought processes are quite similar - feeling towards something by a combination of study, thought and trial (and in our case, discussion). Maybe we were just lucky that we meshed so well and that it was OK to guide and lead in turn, as Cat tried writing and I tried making art.

I also hadn't realised that artists are at least as nerdy as writers, with their stacks of books on art theory and their parallel universe of art gallery openings (as opposed to poetry readings and book launches). Again, how naive of me! We found a difference when it came to the curation of the exhibition though. Cat told me that artists rarely have any say about how their works are displayed, whereas writers generally are control freaks when it comes to the display of their words on the page (though book covers are sadly a different story).

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Tree climbing, poetry and cultural navel-gazing in eleven minutes twenty two seconds

Here's an interview by the wonderful Suzanne Schokman on Radio New Zealand - her skillful editing making me sound way more insightful than I actually am. Includes readings of "M.O.T.H.E.R" and "Chinglish".