Posts Tagged Cassandra Cronenberg

Last Friday

Friday afternoon in my dream you were on my chair in the kitchen bright light in your suit and hat and beard by the easil and I was in your beard and on you and later still you were in me and then you took down your pants to take a shit and said “I can’t do this right now”, then there were people here and I lost you for a bit, a giant woman naked came out of the balcony her black eye I thought she was arnold in total recal when he was disguised as a woman, she passed through and as she did turned into a naked venus of sorts as she went out the door and down the stairs as I hurried to find her my red coat, she blew me a kiss and left, then you were in me again and we were walking and went to get food and when we sat down to eat I had to go and get my kids, we had to separate, there were kraft dinner boxes shaken at me by the woman behind the counter at the brown diner in a hotel where we had been escorted to through the back staircase and she said, “she is going to make that for them”, even though I’m sure I could have got it better there, and you came out of me, it was a bit chaotic as we parted, i don’t want to be fucked up the ass again

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Persephone

CHAPTER ONE
In The Beginning

I have never known the precise moment that I became pregnant by Immaculate Conception. I suppose some women don’t know when exactly they conceive, but I have always felt that my particular situation was deserving of special notification. I do know however when this concept, not as an actual possibility of course, but as an ancient story transplanted into a modern context, entered my consciousness for the first time.

I was living on College Street and working in the Religious Studies library stacking books at the University of Toronto. I realized, while placing a copy of the King James Version of The Bible back on the shelf, that my period was late. The question must have been formulated on the way home from work. Walking usually instigates thought.

“If I became pregnant by Immaculate Conception would I have to follow the religion of my child?” I asked my roommate as I walked in the door. He was sitting on our blue velour sofa, in our Ramona painted living room, watching his cigarette smoke hang, suspended in the air. After a minute he responded, “No, as long as you supported it, that would be fine.” At the time this was a hypothetical question based on one fact: My period was late and I hadn’t slept with anyone in months.

During my late teens and early twenties I would go through five-month periods of celibacy every year. This was usually induced by an especially negative or positive sexual experience, never a mediocre one. The unfavourable experience would turn me off sex because I would have to take the time to figure out why it had happened and the positive experience would remind me to avoid bad sex. Mediocre experiences could never evoke an extreme reaction like celibacy. I can’t remember how I used to exit these periods, except that they always seemed to end after about five months.

The sexual experience prior to this particular period in question was a negative one. A man i had met in a bar, that I use to frequent, had wormed his way into my apartment, into my bed and consequently, into me. I didn’t want to sleep with him but unfortunately at the time I felt it was easier to submit that to deal with his ego. This threw me into a period of heavy analysis as to why some women do such things. Being involved with men, I find, is not conducive to this type of examination.

After a few months, I came to the conclusion; that women aren’t often taught to do what they want to do. From this I decided that I would, as simple as it sounds, only sleep with men that I really wanted to sleep with. At the time, I didn’t think of it as missed, it was late, and would come again just as it always did. I continued my life as if it were still my life.

“How can we be 98% water? It definitely doesn’t feel like I’m 98% water.” I asked as I took another toke of the joint.

“That’s great. We should get T-shirts made up with that on the front. ‘I sure don’t feel like 98% water.’ Let’s write that down so we don’t forget it.” Joe said excitedly as he pinched the roach from my fingers.

“Didn’t it use to be 70%? No aren’t we 80%?” Dave asked. He had been a bad experience from four years ago. I ignored him, as I reached for the pad of paper we saved just for these moments of what we thought of as “moments of genius.”

I had met Joe, my roommate, five years earlier at a party. He was introduced to me by my boyfriend of the time. When I moved back to Toronto years later, we bumped into each other and went for lunch. He had just moved back from Vancouver and was looking for a roommate. I had been living at home, trying to avoid the inevitable adult life. Over that lunch, we decided we would move in together and within four days we had found our apartment. We used to sleep together on occasion, never when I was with someone else, but often if he was. In retrospect, I wanted to be with him in my strange, incapable of commitment kind of way, and we had sex whenever he wanted to.

As I wrote down the quote, the phone rang. It was a sound I always hated when I was high.

“Joe, please get that, I got it the last time,” I pleaded. This was a game we often played.

“No you didn’t. I’m not answering it.”

“Fine!” I stomped off into the kitchen and grabbed the phone just before the answering machine picked up.

“Hullo?”

“Lea?” It was my best friend.

“Les, thank God it’s you.”

“What’s up? You stoned?”

“Yeah.”

Leslie and I had been friends for three years but it felt like forever. If something important happened in our lives it never felt real until we told each other about it. We had met in Montreal where we went to university. I was in Religious Studies and she was in Jewish History. I had always noticed her in the library because of her amazingly enormous hair and her silver nose ring.

The first day we met, we were in the smoking room on the fourth floor of the library. We were both in there by ourselves sitting across from each other. In the centre of the badly ventilated, garbage filled room there was a group of men discussing feminism loudly and crudely. We kept giving each other knowing glances of disdain and finally she said to me, so that they could hear, “I don’t think we need to subject ourselves to this bullshit. Shall we go?” The men turned to look and I felt my chest tighten. All I could do was nod, put out my cigarette and follow her out the door. From that point on, until my pregnancy, we were the best of friends. At the time of this call, she was in New York doing her Masters.

“Les, is it possible that I’ve been getting my period for the last four months but its all been a facade and really I’ve been pregnant all along?” I finally expressed my growing concern about my missing period. This verbalization to Leslie now meant the situation was placed on a level or reality it hadn’t been on before.

“God, you are stoned.” She laughed.

“O.k., I’m kind of serious. I mean, how can my period be almost a month late? I haven’t had sex in four months. Can you think of any reason besides Immaculate Conception?” I said this jokingly because at the time I of course felt that say this was simply an expression of my bewilderment surrounding the situation and nothing more.

“Maybe you should go to the doctor. Are you stressed? Have you been exercising more than normal? I would ask you if you’ve lost weight but I know you haven’t. I don’t think it’s remotely possible that you’re pregnant. Your period is late for some reason but it will come eventually don’t worry.”

“You think I should go to the doctor?”

“Why not?”

I made an appointment the next day.

“I’d like to make an appointment with Doctor Movak as soon as possible.”

“What is it regarding?” The secretary asked in a nasal voice. She was so protective of his time.

“Um. Well, my period is quite late and I’m not sure what’s going on.” I said nervously. Would this problem be taken seriously enough to grant me some time with him?

“Have you taken a pregnancy test? She asked accusingly.

“Well, no. It’s not possible that I’m pregnant.”

“I can give you a time on August 27th. 3:00.”

“But that’s in a month.” I whined.

“Dr. Movak is going on vacation in two weeks and he’s booked solidly until then. Is this an emergency?”

“I suppose not.”

“Fine.” She hung up.

I felt rejected. Wasn’t my problem good enough for them? What if I had ovarian cancer and I had to wait another month while it festered in my body? What if I was dying?  This month was going to be hell, unless of course my period arrived.

In the month that followed, I preceded to do copious amounts of drugs. In retrospect, I believe I did this to help me forget about my ensuing death, and/or destroy whatever could be growing inside me, be it cancer or the impossible child. The reality was that, more often than not, drugs enhanced the situation. Coke, was good for the rush but it made me talk about my circumstance to strangers in bars. Pot was usually good, however, if I thought too much while high, paranoia would take over and death was all consuming. Hallucinogens weren’t the best either. On occasion, during the month of August, God himself spoke to me about our coming child. The only time he did, I might add.

In the end, I found the combination of large quantities of alcohol, which dulls the mind and the ability to communicate, coke, after I was already drunk, with pot to take the edge off on my way down. This was the most effective ménage a trios. I had always believed Joe’s theory that three mind-altering substances at one time was the limit, and if you stuck to it, you would be fine in the end. My graduate fellowship helped me pay for this month of extreme debauchery.

“What if we aren’t really here? I mean, yeah, we’re just a figment of someone’s imagination, like God’s.  Yeah know what I mean?” Dave took a large swig of his beer and waited for my response.

“I don’t think that matters at all. Can I get another gin and tonic? Thanks.” I was on my sixth and feeling no pain, except in regard to the conversation I was having with Dave.

“How can that not matter? What if it’s all a sick game?”

“Dave, I am no longer interested in this conversation. I’m going to play pool with Joe.” Dave had this habit of not being the brightest of people. He also felt the need to challenge me constantly on any issue especially if it pertained to theology and philosophy.

From as far back as I can remember, religion and philosophy had always fascinated me. My parents got divorced when I was three and I lived with my mother. She was searching for god and took me along for the ride; my dad didn’t want to go with us. Not because his father died, which happened the same year, and not because I turned three, which is what I thought, but because he said my mom had started to change, fundamentally.

According to him, it was that she read a book about Carl Jung and he still was into Sigmund Freud. He told me their break up was the most devastating thing that had ever happened to him, other than his father dying.

I don’t remember my grandfather very well, he died young.  I have a vague memory of riding my tricycle up to him at my aunt’s house. I also remember my dad being very sad when he died. They say these memories can’t be true, but they are to me.

I’ve been told my grandfather was a smart, kind man. He collected stamps and wrote for the Globe and Mail. My father just recently found out what liver disease he died from, on the Internet, (the same thing his best and oldest friend has), they didn’t know at the time. Needless to say, it was not a good year for the whole family.

My mother was Christian by birth and so Christ was always present in her travels, however far she would stray. As well as Christ, we also explored aspects of Jung, The Gestalt and Buddhism. Once when I was three, we went to the Astrodome in Texas to see a man speak who said he was the Son of God. My Dad told me that he drove a Ferrari and got his secretary pregnant. Was this before or after Jung?

My mom spent many hours in the closet meditating and when she wasn’t doing that she was cutting out squared from coloured construction paper. She would arrange and rearrange them all over our apartment walls. From age four through eight, my mom and I use to visit a man who changed his name every week. It was here that I had my guardian angel painted and learned to meditate. It was during this period of my life that my mother told me that God knew what I was thinking even before I did. I use to lie in bed for hours and try to outthink God.

We used to live in an attic apartment above a family. I would wake up in the moring and go down to their place for breakfast while my mom spent time with the closet. For three years they were my surrogate family. They had a son my age, Paul. We were in the same class a t school. When we moved, I didn’t see Paul again until my first year of university in Montreal. Seeing him, reminded me, that children often become more extreme than their parents, in order to please them.

“ Clea is that you?” A voice said as I walked in the door of one of my first university parties.

“Oh, my God. Paul is that you?” I said, hoping desperately that it wasn’t. He was a witness, unlike any other, to the time in my life, I didn’t want to remember.

“Of course it is. How are you?” He asked, a little too concerned for my liking.

We got to talking, despite my obvious discomfort. After the catching up chatter and quite a few drinks, he brought up the time we lived on Woodlawn Street together.

“I have so many memories from that house,” he mused. “Like that game you use to make me play, remember?”

My stomach tightened, “No”. I really didn’t, unless he was referring to “Playing Doctor” of course. He was the first and only boy I played that game with, curious about the penis and vagina. I held my breath.

“You use to make me put on rubber boots and rubber gloves and we would dance around in a circle chanting the same thing over and over again for hours. What was it? It was like a mantra or something. That was such a funny thing to do wasn’t it?” He started to laugh.

I didn’t know which was worse, this, or playing doctor. “Excuse me, I have to go to the bathroom,” I said, as I barged to the front of the line and just made it before I vomited on the floor. My God, I hope it was worth it to me to have been like that then so I can feel it’s worth it now.

For the rest of the night, I tried desperately to avoid him. When I eventually bumped into him again he was drunk. He put his arm around my shoulders and begain to introduce me to his friends as “the girl I use to live with.” I tried to explain it wasn’t quite like that but soon gave up out of shear emotional exhaustion.

Once Paul and I shared a ride back to Toronto from school; he convinced me to come in and see his parents. I felt nauseous, but acquiesced in order to appear normal, as I often did. As soon as I saw them and the way they looked at me, I knew it was a mistake to be there.

“How are you?” His mom asked with too much concern.

“Fine, fine,” I replied shortly, I started to see stars.

How is your mom?” Her expression of warmth, concern, combined with the knowledge behind it almost broke me.

“Great?” I said over-enthusiastically, my face twitching.

Suddenly, we were alone in the kitchen. She didn’t waist anytime, probably sensing this would be her only chance. She was right about that.

“I remember when she really withdrew, your mom. We were so worried about you two. I use to call your Dad and let him know how you were. You spent a lot of time with us you know.”

“Yes. Thank you, thanks.” I felt like I always had to thank these people, people who I had been left with as a child. I needed to get out of there, fast.

“Paul?” I called. “Do you mind dropping me off now? I really have got to get going. Thanks again, nice to see you all.” I said, as I backed out of the kitchen. I had spent so much time with this woman in the kitchen.

When I was seven, my mother took me out of my school and we moved away from Paul and his family across town to the Zencentre. Things started to go downhill. The man with the changing name had suggested that this would be a good place for us, I disagreed but we went any way. I hated my new school. Everyone seemed to have oversized heads and swore too much. They scared me.

There were ten adults living in the Zencentre and me. Of all the people who lived in the house I only remember Sherry. She had curly brown hair and I loved her. When I left almost a year later, she gave me an orange flowered lacquer box. I still have it.

Every day, the adults would gather together in the main room, it was long and narrow with a Buddha at the end, and stare at dots on the wall for two hours at a time. They eventually had a robe made for me, so that I could join in. It was gold and yellow and I loved it. Being seven however, made this daily ritual unspeakable torture. I couldn’t move or talk for two hours every day. They didn’t make me do it, I wanted to. It was a way for me to belong, to spend time with my mom. I would inevitably leave before the two hours were up. I would go up to the third floor and pull the phone our from Sherry’s bedroom. I would sit in the middle of the white hexagonal shape created by the position of the doors and call my father.

“Daddy?”

“Hi Sweetie, how are you?”

“Daddy…please come and get me. I hate it here. Please come and get me. I want to live with you. I want to go back to my old school and live with you.” I would often cry.

I don’t even think he could respond with anything but, “I know honey. I love you. I know. You’re coming to visit in two days. I know, I know.” Although I had confided my true feelings to my father, it hadn’t done me any good.

We use to eat on the floor out of brightly coloured bowls of various sizes. We would sit cross-legged on the floor and ritualistically eat without speaking, always noodles. Until I was in my late-teens, I couldn’t taste Asian style noodles without getting nauseous.  Every weak we wither couldn’t speak for three days at a time or couldn’t eat for the same length of time. My mother would sneak me yogurt and whisper, “Shhhh, eat quietly.”

A cat started to come and visit me at the house. It became my sole friend and confidant. I named the cat Zebulon and loved him intently.

One day, I heard it meowing outside the back door. I went to look and on the porch was a half dead bird. I started to shake with fear. How could this cat that I loved do this to a poor little bird? I shooed Zeb away and brought the bird inside. I kept it in a cardboard box and tried to feed it with a dropper, just as my dad had told me to do. I couldn’t ask my mother for advice because the whole event was too high in negative energy for her to handle.

During the last days of this bird’s life, I remembered a conversation I had had with my father a few weeks prior on one of my visits.

“Dad, do you believe in God?” We were driving to Canadian tire, a favourite pastime of ours. I use to love to put the bolts on my fingers like rings. He would buy me one every time. Visiting my Dad up until this moment was always such a relief.

“No. I don’t.”  He responded.

This was unbelievable to me. “Why not?”

“I decided when I was a child that I didn’t, and I still don’t.”

“How.”

“I once found a bird that had flown into a window but hadn’t died yet. I took it home and tried to nurse it back to health. I decided, if God saved the bird, he existed, if he did not, then he didn’t. The bird died.”

“But Dad, how can that be proof?” I always wanted proof. I desperately wanted an adult to be able to prove to me whether or not god existed and this, although shocking, was not proof.

“It was to me.”

I told my mother about what my father had said. She told me that his was not a good reason to dismiss God and that what had happened to my Dad was a test from God and my Dad had failed. I found this greatly disturbing. Even though I was young, I knew this meant that in order to please my mother, if the bird died, I had to see it as part of God’s plan and not as a declaration of his absence.

To my father, I now had to simulate his previous experience. I was caught completely confused in the middle. I didn’t realize at the time, that the feelings of relief I felt when I was with him, were in fact because of his secular nature. Of course the bird died and I tried to believe it meant that God was dead, but I just couldn’t take this event as proof. The cat killed it. It just wasn’t enough. My mother was pleased.

When I would stay with my Dad on the weekends, in the Bathurst apartment, soon after my parents got divorced, he used to leave me a snack in the fridge. Sometimes I had to remind him. I would get up at 7am, go to the fridge and get the snack. I would sit down, in front of the T.V. until he would get up around 1 or 2 in the afternoon. He slept all the time. He was not happy. Sometimes Sophia use to come and play with me, I think this must have been later, though I’m not sure. I remember every night, when I would go to bed on the mattress in the living room, there was a shadow on the wall that looked like a man with an axe, I would be paralysed with fear. The next morning I would forget to tell him.

He was much happier once he was with Sophia. When they lived together my Dad and I use to play all the time. “Footy”, was one of my favourite games. It was a way for him to stay in bed longer, I would sit on the floor at the end of the bed; he would hang his foot out and talk his foot. I remember thinking it was a real little creature, not his foot at all. I use to slap it around when he would fall back asleep saying, “Footy, Footy are you there?” He would get hours more doze time with the Footy game. He told me, I use to talk to his foot for hours and all he had to do was twitch it every once and a while. I also remember “Shark”. We would be in his bed and I would have to secure the fort around me with the covers, and he, The Shark, would try to attack me. I remember loving these games.

Then there was the “Dirty Foot Monster” game. In order to ensure that I would wash my feet in the bath, he would tell me stories of the Dirty Foot Monster who ate dirty feet. Every once in a while, he would turn into the Dirty Foot Monster and chase me into the bathroom. I would run screaming and lock the door, while he would stand outside to make sure I washed my feet. I eventually, after years it felt like, got so scared of the dirty foot monster that at bedtime he once told me a story, like he always did. Sometimes I wouldn’t let him read, he had to make it up. He told me the Dirty Foot Monster had discovered turnips, which supposedly tasted just like dirty feet, so he went to live on Farmer Browns farm to eat turnips all day. I was so relieved.

He used to tell me stories about furry newts, (I had newts, not furry of course) that use to travel around the city on people’s faces masquerading as their eyebrows. I loved those stories. He even rewrote the end of Stuart Little for me, because it was so sad to me that Stuart got separated from the Robin. He wrote it on his typewriter. He put me into the story. I loved the new ending. I still have these pages, now yellow with age. They are in the back of the book, the happy ending.

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Metal Landscape

013lores(2)

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Horizon

009lores(2)

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Dinnertime

Time spent

Around a table

Wasps attacking

Saying I’m street

How to deal

With the right ear

Now that I’m

Repeating

Hyper-ventalation

Creation

Hanging out with the kids

Staying grounded

Well founded

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Something

Something that happened to a friend and I (or not)

More or Less

His face

Hiding behind his hands

Not scary to me

I broke him in

So this is nothing to me

Except fun

No, not really

[A Friend]

Now I can’t write

Another way

Can’t get there from here

Trust

I

Hormones and acne

You

Only care about your sensuality

That spreads too far

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Safety

To feel safe

Reading about him

Feeling safe alone

Leaving home

Wanting to see in

Safe with him

No, not really

I don’t feel safe, she said

And then they sent them

Safe within

Safe without

How to connect

To the doubt

Without

Within

Without

Safety

For them

And for me

Not ideal

To play a role

It takes its toll

Life is a stage

Time heals all wounds

I’m melting, said the witch

Safe

Is a four letter word

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Found poems cached

Archive for category Poems

Elephant

Posted by admin in Poems on February 13th, 2010

Then count the glasses, the blinds, the dots on the wall, count them, count them afterward, always afterwards, always after words…was it always like this or was it like this then and then for some reason now because of her age, now go.

Rock’n roll

This album is in my car

The hounds of hell,

There is no help for you here girl go away, there is no home for you here, there is no help for you here girl go away, there is no home for you here, that’s right,

I don’t know what to do with myself

Come to me again in the cold, cold night

I’ll just lie in my bed anxiously waiting until you go home

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Turandot

Posted by admin in Poems on February 9th, 2010

This story is what I think of when I think of you.

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Seven: Written in the summer

Posted by admin in Poems on February 9th, 2010

“Rag mama rag this is the band, this is where it is remember shit can you remember this that time we had that don’t worry about that where did they go that is true where did they go now here there here there it can’t be like that where are they, where were they, that’s the wine on the wall this is where I was this is where I was ok this is where I was. Do you hear me? Know this is where I was. The wine and how do I stay out of that? Is that the character? This is the character, the addict, there is one old and young this is ok, there we go that’s fine there why you don’t want that character her e you don’t want that character here is that right ok.”

“That’s it.”

“Where did I go? Is that who you mean?”

“Be careful.”

“Thank you A.”

“Must be careful this is where the need comes from, the need, people knowing where is it going, this is where I was and this can’t go there, this was me calling J and this was me calling my d for lunch, this is lunch. This is lunch!”

“Start again, you here, start again.”

“Never should have taken the very best.”

“This is the table I miss.”

“What are you doing? How are you doing? How’s it going?”

“How’s it going? Pretty good how about you? Hi how are you?” pretty well

“How’s it going, Hi how are you, how is it going? Hi how are you? How’s it going? This is me, this is good I bow down to you to say I would like something from you I would like something from you say I would like things to be like this I have to get this off of my computer to get this going I have to get this going from off of my computer this is how it is going this is how it is going this is how it is going this is how it is going. I left and he took charge he took over I left and he took over this is what needs to happen I left and he took over. This went up too high, went up too high, this went up too high. Keep it lower must keep it lower, the flies ,the heat, the store, the Asian way, the way Dao is the way, the way there are many paths, these are the ways, this has to be clean like a meditation, clean like a meditation, we must ask to go into each other’s room, we have to ask to go into each other’s rooms, this is the way it will be then to ask to go into each other’s rooms we can do that, we have to ask to do that, I think this must be the way to do it, this must be the way to do it, this must be the way to do it. To ask to be grateful to go into what I have to do, this must be written down as it has been written down; this must be written down as it is written down. To combine all three to combine the three to ask before to ask before this will be written down to ask before.

Ok it is important to ask. I’ll ask next time this must be the thing to do to ask next time to ask next time. Please be for me and not for her why did I bring her there to help her to help her but I would like it if she would be there for me. This cannot be ok this whole thing what is going on must be careful and to ask if this is ok to ask the universe to ask to hear you wouldn’t believe what I have heard.

This is ok now be healthy this is who I must see maybe this is who I must see but I have to be careful this I must be careful about this it must be something to be careful about this I must be careful about. They are all crying and it’s very hard to write while they are all crying, they are all crying but I can’t help. I am here at least, I am in the garage and close to them.

Nest time nest time ovulation ok nest time I can keep going, I don’t have to do this I don’t have to I can’t find this anyway I probably can’t find this anyway. Maybe we should go together we should go see someone together we need to see a therapist together I guess we do we should I mean we should see two together. This is what I have this is what I have this is what I have this is what I have.

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Existential Crisis #4 or is that A Creative Crisis or is that creative illness or is that separation anxiety or is that self analysis or is that love found and lost, then web of loss, or is that a cocoon??

Posted by admin in Poems on February 9th, 2010

Oh haven’t I documented the last three?

1: I should preface this with, I had just moved off of college street after living above coco lezzone for almost three years and was wanting to leave the film industry and get married and have children, so this was after getting engaged and my fiancee moving into my new apartment on Bartlett with me from London, while still living in the apartment on Bartlett above Bloor after living with my roommate on college stand before getting married: Crisis

Result of crisis: Left film, started therapy and my second BA in psychology at York which I completed in 2002, two years with distinction and volunteering at the distress centre and in Kanauague Quebec, I never spell it right, as well, my first degree being Honours East Asian Studies McGill 91-95

2: After getting married and buying a house:Crisis

Result of crisis: Finished writing Persephone which I started in the apt on college street written originally for the Anvil Three Day Novel Writing contest, my roommate won, I edited his book, also took writing workshops with author Cary Fagan, and journalism courses at Ryerson and wrote for Eye weekly

3:After kid number one was 18months:Crisis

Result of crisis: wrote 56 poems, read them at the art bar and was told they were more like songs,  was already taking guitar lessons at central tech and in my instructors basement on Palmerston, singing from scratch at the royal conservatory a total trip, then pottery on Harbord, working on film Solace, painting lessons from my neighbours sister in her garden, then into U of T course 20th century abstraction

4:After kid number two was 18 months and my first kid went into grade one, huge separation:Crisis

Result of crisis be it existential or creative: Painting in a studio above The Department Gallery on Dundas West and, Writing, for six months, some group shows, also started poems on this blog, u of t modern architecture course and other prose, I suppose, and in the future like not this year because my kids too young, taking a Humber course on Creative Book Publishing and hopefully getting into the the writing schools correspondence course to write a novel from May to Nov will find out in a few days if Down the Street was accepted, the writer’s circle sounds cool too…

Dorthy Parker picking the word Horticulture out of a hat at one of the writers circles and having to use it in a sentence said:

You can lead a whore to culture but you can’t make her drink.”

respect

If this is not enough shared biographical information for Word press and Google I also worked in film as an assistant director for 10 years and traveled, in no particular order, through Italy, and France, drove and camped through Cape Breton, PEI and Nova Scotia, Scotland, Drove all around Ireland and Northern Ireland to see the Baymoore stone circles just before the Omah bombing of the shopping mall by the IRA, lived in Montreal and edited Vice Magazine, Denmark, Germany, France, Switzerland, UK, camped on the Isle of White, and travelled for three months in China, Mongolia, Myanmar, camped on the beach in Jamaica and saw Jimmy Cliff and Ziggy Marley live, Dominican Republic, California(like 40 times and all kinds of crazy shit) , New York many times for new years and friends and fun, Israel for a friends wedding SO GLAD I WENT just after my fiance moved to T.O left him in our cockroach infested apartment and went for two weeks with friend, Jordan, London, Paris, The Japanese airport many times, Copenhagen, Brugge (piece of my heart there too) Germany did I say Germany already, Munich for a day couldn’t handle the English German accent but went to the Oktoberfest bar anyway “ein beer bitta”,  Berlin, the wall had just come down, walked around east Berlin and the zoo listening to Graceland on my yellow walkman, very surreal, went to Dacau, Amsterdam, bridges and canals and the redlight, ate space cake, went to Anne Franks attic, I have the same birthday as she did and Andy Taylor from Duran Duran or was it her sister…Budapest, Czechoslovakia (a piece of my heart is in Prague with Boris and Dorian who couldn’t go home to Croatia because of the war, and Greece), Santarini with the black sand almost stayed there and worked in a cafe and slept on the floor and rooves for that matter and beaches of course, Edinburgh many times once, the first time, for the film festival with my family drove around in shamu singing all the way, also Sundance that same summer, Drove from Caledon through Texas to Mexico, as well as from San diego to Tijuana, as well as club med Ixtapa, Atlanta, Louisiana, Memphis Graceland, Drove from T.O to Taos New Mexico reading The First Third and wrote with friends, Cuba etc…and was born and raised in Toronto and I’m Lithuanian,  (fuck not Lutheran) but know nothing about that at all, maybe German, maybe Dutch  Jew, Irish, English, maybe Dutch, French, Protestant, (ouch) Canadian Aquarian water rat with Polish, Ukrainian, (Russian), (Israeli) American and Native Canadian sensibilities in some form or another, would like to go to where Pilvishik Lithuania used to be someday to see where my grandparents were from on one side, would love to go to Poland and Russia too, have been to England and Ireland and seen the stone circles and kilns and castles and rolling green moores and landscape unlike any other

Still in therapy, personally and couples  -  try anything you can ie acupuncture, chiropractor, yoga but not right now, massage but not any more, working out,  now going to get into winter jogging, and swimming, trying out the new tabs, alittle p.o.t etc…a drink now and again and good healthy food, I want to be a vegetarian again, I want to learn Reiki, and of course coffee and music, cigarettes only on a rare night out and maybe a dog at some point like a German Shepard or a husky, lab mix or something crazy like that, I love a Doberman but you have to be careful around the kids…and of course spending time in the schools and at home with the kids and helping out where I can without being too annoying…and figuring out how to help people who don’t have these things in a crisis

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Thank you

Posted by admin in Poems on February 7th, 2010

for biking beside me

on my way to pick up my daughter

and take her to the doctor

And thank you for the white bike

I found on the ground

I’ll use it for nights

out

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Can I get you anything else?

Posted by admin in Poems on February 7th, 2010

Just your undying love

And the promise that the snarl is for me

I’m  in my room

you said you could handle it

No Comments

This user hasn’t shared

Posted by admin in Poems on February 6th, 2010

This user hasn’t shared any biographical information

- Google or is it word press and I’m being rude?

Who the fuck is Google or word press to say I haven’t shared ANY biographical info?

Who are the people commenting on personal biographical poetry in different languages under made up names?

Where are these user’s shared biographical information?

- Anonymous

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Who? What?

Posted by admin in Poems on February 6th, 2010

Who is you or him?

Who is it you or him?

Who is it me or you?

Who is me or you?

What is me and you?

What about time?

What about pressure?

What about the weather?

Do you want to kill it?

Will it

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About

Posted by admin in Poems on February 2nd, 2010

artlocal 21 represents a local of a larger union, that being the larger art community in Toronto, Queen Street boasting the most galleries in North America in a concentrated area. We like the idea of Dundas West too as a gallery district perhaps a cultural hub, Brockton…This idea of an art union is a bit of a communist concept where no one really profits on the backs of others, it is horizontal and lateral, everyone having something of value to offer, no one more important than the other in that of course everyone including children ride on their parents backs from time to time and have to make a living. artlocal happenings in our very neighbourhoods, the mothers and fathers of the community, the neighbour hood artist, art is a way of life. Being a parent; It is important to be a parent in an artistic way and living in an economically and culturally diverse community is important for learning and growth and most importantly support the families especially in a downtown core. The drop-in centre’s are like free families for isolated urban mothers and fathers, grandparents and children. The community centre for all, the Centre for Mental Health and Addiction, for all, the Coffee Shop, the Music Shop, the Pet Shop for all. This is a drop in art space for isolated urban artists. artlocal like rick ferrari is also a bit of an alter ego for the sensitive artiste in a multi-cultural country where language and communication is challenging for everyone, artlocal kicks in to try and protect. artlocal is also a place where art can be bought and sold. national history. writing about local life.  street name artlocal.  number 21.

Full Circle

I didn’t think that I would be here again

This time I don’t want to make the same mistakes

Consume, consume

What are the mistakes?

What is the fantasy?

Strengthen the core

No one knows the future

Not even I

Lost

Not always

It’s too far away to go at night

I will never paint

I will never write

I have to live there

I have no fucking room

All the space I could possibly have

But I still have no fucking room

Recycling

No more plastic bags per se

Must pay

Only cloth

Or hard plastic stay

Now we use milk bags

Bread bags

Already in use bags

This

Is

How

It

Is

Now

New

World

Order

Architecture

So that’s it?

Great amazing structures of colonialism

Or is it Nationalism?

Identity

Of take over

Of combinations of colonizers and the colonized

Cultural appropriation

Greek Revival

It will never last forever

Sorry

Where are you?

Are you in the car?

Are you in the house?

The living room?

The dining room used for laundry?

The kitchen?

The bathroom?

The bedroom?

It’s mine not yours

The office?

Yours or mine?

Where are you?

I can’t find you

Anywhere

At all

Impressed by the cities ability to deal with the strike

The garbage could be much worse

Unions, CUPE, now hated

Always a problem

No jobs

Recession

No childcare

No work

No tourism….so selfish

I fucking hate CUPE

But trying not to hate in general

I cannot

I do think like this and so I must be like this. I can’t pretend but I can’t mix it in either, it’s just the way it goes, no mixing in this reality and then what about hormones and feeling life has no meaning and then meeting someone who’s love turns you on again is this right?

What do you do with this then? You walk around turned on and hope you don’t get attacked in a dark alley, you can’t be out at night all turned on and ovulating sending out the pheromones or what have you or is this just purely physical? A woman in heat. And does this mean it should mean less? Or maybe more because now that I think about it I really don’t feel this way very often or just once before really at the same age of my first daughter.

Was I looking for you? No, I just found you. When you decided we can’t have any more and I clearly cannot stop but agree we should not have more. This is what we have done; this is where we are going. I cannot hurt you now and I cannot be the older one who doesn’t recognize where things are going and blindly live in the 50’s, I cannot be her/e.

Angle

This angle doesn’t work for me it never has

So every time we have to adjust and remember that it never works for me

But you never do, you never remember, this may be a guy thing in which case I am so disheartened you can’t possible imagine because I love men but if you are all like this I am going to have some serious problems and then again maybe not so many because I will stay with the one I have and appreciate him because he is a keeper and what more could I want from a man who I was married too.

Maybe this marriage thing is the problem, my grandfather told me if you aren’t married then as a woman you aren’t protected, he is 95 and I think common law is pretty good now a days but what if you don’t even live with them that could be better for now anyway. ..I don’t know they say if you aren’t married it’s not for real, it won’t last but I know some who never were and they are fine.

I think I put too much into the dress and rings and all of this security means something but if from inside you don’t have it then it doesn’t matter or is this just marriage or years of being with someone in the same space it just happens, with kids it’s too hard for everyone or the loss we have had.

Is this what I will be searching about forever? I am sorry for that and I will have to remind you of the angle every time.

I only exist in this space

I didn’t think I would be here again,

Only tea,

Only tea,

Shhh shhh shhh

Sleep baby

Sleep

My girlfriend lives up the street

I’m sorry I yelled “HEY!” while you were beautiful

I just couldn’t stand there quietly in your beauty

I was going to say something but

I wasn’t being me

I still see you sweeping in black surrounded by wood and old music

I must have seemed like a horrible force

One day maybe I can say to you in a soft sweet voice

“Baby, don’t clean it like that” like a kiss

I have already destroyed what I have

I feel for sure I can’t go back

All is lost

Nothing good can come of anything

This must be true

I am trapped with feet and hands and now going down this road

Humanity

What

Are you good?

I can’t write this right now the kids just came down

Will They Always Hate Me

Will they always hate me and think it was me because I am the one who yells and you remain quietly passive the victim or the saviour and I the crazy European Jew who yells and gets no reaction from you is this better? If you weren’t a Jew, were a Jew or are you in your genes but not culturally/socially or is this genetic too so that is different would I then be the cold one that is my fear. Why do I never do the same? Why always the opposite way of communicating? Why do I never remember? If you yelled too maybe we would have had a problem. Now I know how to tone it down and you to not be so cold but is it too late, has the damage been done, will you be better off starting again too? Do we continue on? She said. I have parents that get along and turned our relationship into fantasy already and we are together that can’t be right. Some change is good, that word has taken on new meaning but the meaning is not always clear, and sometimes you have to make the change before you know. This is the problem now.

In my closet

I have a shirt that I keep in case the owner comes back for it

I gave away the jean shirt with the white pearly buttons

It’s actually a hooded sweater and a down vest

Will it fit you?

And the sleeves are there for cold weather writing

Some day

Organic or is it passive?

I always thought organic

Was the only way

To play

But now

I see

It is

Shrouded

In passivity

Tea, only tea,

In the afternoon

And evening

Are you with me?

When you take the empty cup away

My self goes with it

Throw it into you

Thrown into you

You say

You say

It hurts your feelings

When

I say

You throw my equilibrium off

When you talk like that

I ask you

Are we never supposed to be honest?

You say

No

I fucking hate you

I fucking hate you

And the way you speak

And eat

And smell

And taste

And your facade

And your weakness

And your strength

The thought of having sex with you makes me sick

Your little words of wisdom and encouragement too

I hate them all

In this moment

But maybe not the next

Runna

Leaves in the park

The darkness and the light

Runna

Runna

Wet smell of green grass

Over hanging trees

A dog

A man

A woman

Every one of them

Departing

A father

A daughter

A mother darting

Living it out on empty

Breathing heavy

Pounding through the grass

Off roading

In the fading light

When you talk to me like that

When you talk to me like that

My equilibrium goes off

The fluid in my head shifts

And I feel like I will spin

All the way down

Rainy Sunday afternoon

I just want to play with you

I can’t reach you here

Maybe for a moment or two

But I need longer than that

To check out your cat

You are so beautiful

I just want to touch you

Can you feel me here?

Are you going in today?

Just stay

Just stay

Crazy Weather

Is your baby

Caught in the rain

I have been angry for so long

Not understanding

Now I know why you never answer me

You don’t know the language

And I don’t know I’m speaking

Until now

I walk in

And see

All I have to do

Right there

And it hurts my eyes

My body ach-ing

Congratu-lations

I can’t stop hear-ing you

The sidewalks are full of strangers

Will you take me as I am?

Picturing you there

We could be man and wife

In that space

I hear you

What you are saying

Is true

And the yellow wallpaper too

I need your love

Your love

And

Your love

And

That love

Fire and rain

Cycle

I will try to figure this out another way

This is true

Honest and blue

I have to be here

Don’t worry about me

I love still love

You can follow me

If any one knows the balance of this

It will be me

It will be me

Snowy day UK
I only wanted to cuddle
sorry if you thought I wanted to have sex

Yes I was ovulating
and the tackle was attractive as are you always
but didn’t you catch the play acting?
Now you are a man of morals

I would never have sex with someone else, not even you, being married
I would also rather die than live that kind of British male lie
you don’t know the half of it do you JI
A facade and deception and indiscretion
soul destroying now you are annoying

More

Love and (be) longing like Maslow’s triangle. Love and longing more poetic but still you can’t carry your love and longing, love and belonging, love and belongings with you all the time when you leave the house, when you are homeless without him or you would never survive and you cannot leave your love and longing, your love and belongings behind you or you would never survive

How long?

You cannot carry your love and longing around with you or you won’t survive

And if you leave your love and longing behind what is the point of surviving

I cursed her one time then wrote on her head

You are home

You can build what you are building

And

Keep what you have already built

“Hipster,

Where has the yuppie gone?

Not that I’m complaining.”

Now

We have come full circle

Is it Neo Modern?

A break with the past as at the last turn

VS

Neo Arts and Crafts

Use your hands but it costs so much

Still desirable

Or a combo of the two

Creating something new

Reminder

You were so surprised

When I put on make up

Did you think I wasn’t a woman before?

I still AM

Thanks for the reminder

But it’s nothing new to me

Just briefly forgotten and new

I hate

I really do

Every generation

Must make its own city

And this is you

“I have a city

In my mind”,

He said escaping

The Croatian War

Killer whales depress me

So does going back to bed

Thank you

Pilates mostly

Yoga

Thank you

Yoga

Hands

And

Yoga

Don’t cross anything

Just bracket

I need my guitar to be at home

How are we supposed to play?

How is this supposed to work?

Interactive

Yes way

No way

Uh huh

Nuh uh

Now Inside

And feeling better

The bad taste is on its way

Out

Sunday Dec 6th

A heavy day

Remembering the shootings someone accused my father of

The poetry reading

Can’t really claim it for my own

Nor the music

Nor the coffee shop

Although all three are helping

I am outside

With a bad taste in my mouth

On January 17th, 2010

How is this supposed to work?

How are we supposed to play?

IN-TER-ACT-IVE

Yes

Artlocal 21 Presents a night of Poetry Readings » Artlocal 21 Presents a night of Poetry Readings

This entry was posted on Sunday, June 21st, 2009 and is filed under Poems. You can follow any responses The poets were talented and charismatic as was the audience, the department gallery with it’s dark orange curtains, black leather sofa and ottoman, lights and eclectic mix of wood and plastic coloured chairs, one black, I never did see who sat there. The benches and the back patio a perfect place to meet for a drink in between the taster, thanks MC, and the rest of the warm summer evening. The artwork colours mentioned throughout, the Canadian mixture of insects, the wilderness, waiting and watching, a loss of innocence, until the next one…

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How

Posted by admin in Poems on January 17th, 2010

How is this suppose to work?

How are we suppose to play?

Interactive?

Yes way

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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ART PROJECT

Forgive me

I lost Elephant

And Seven

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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Video, Art, Sexuality, Dreams and Viewing the Subconscious

Art Project: Longer Version and link to bigger youtube/facebookmix aka ART VIDEO

Posted by admin in Art Video, Art Writing on March 10th, 2010

There is an hour long version of just me at 16 and school friends and family…

These thumbnails are a drag

I had no idea that youtube had a male point of view

If you want to see the bigger facebookmix

Go to this link

http://www.youtube.com/v/TCxi4c_g2ig&hl=en_US&fs=1&rel=0%22%3E%3C/param%3E%3Cparam

1988, Abstract Art, Adam Russell Hunter, Art History, Art Project, Art Video, artlocal21, Canadian Art, David Cronenberg, Facebook, Michael Snow, mix, Toronto, unsyncopated, Video Art, You tube

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The Art of Non-Verbal Language

Posted by admin in Art Writing, Video Art on March 7th, 2010

<object width=”480″ height=”385″><param name=”movie” value=”http://www.youtube.com/v/w2-zzArQVh4&hl=en_US&fs=1&rel=0″></param><param name=”allowFullScreen” value=”true”></param><param name=”allowscriptaccess” value=”always”></param><embed src=”http://www.youtube.com/v/w2-zzArQVh4&hl=en_US&fs=1&rel=0″ type=”application/x-shockwave-flash” allowscriptaccess=”always” allowfullscreen=”true” width=”480″ height=”385″></embed></object>

1987, Abstract Art, Adam Russell Hunter, Art Project, artlocal21, Brandon Cronenberg, Catherine Porter, Cry Freedom, Dan Augustino, Daphne, David Cronenberg, Erica, Ghost Busters, grade 11 art project, Highschool, John Lennon, Josh, Lisa Mathews, Martha Corcoron, Massacre of the Innocence, Michael Snow, Noelle Man, North Toronto Collegiate Institute, Scott Baines, Silent Movies, Stephen Biko, Tanya, Tara Jung, The Art of Non-Verbal Language, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Video Art, You tube, Zak Cross

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Dreams, this one maybe ovulatory…

Posted by admin in Art Writing, Dream Poems on March 4th, 2010

You were working next door to the party I was leaving, wearing a tuque  and a balmer jacket and a red skirt with red heels, I guess like Johnny Depp in that movie with Javier Bardem, I remember taking note, you turned around from what may have been the outdoor arcade game, you had a beard and I said “oh do you work hear?” and you said “Yeah” and I said “oh good”.  I was happy and smiled with some perspective on my profile, usually it’s just from my eyes.

I was circling around you, you in a white t-shirt maybe without the beard I couldn’t tell, my hand was running along your stomach as I walked around you, like we were dancing. You were smiling too.

You in profile with the beard, you said “I want to fuck you.”

There was an apartment at some point and my mother was visiting.

Afterward there was the train ride with another older man, completely naked with tattoos, I wish I could remember the dialogue, a dark cabin that looked like a modern small sized bedroom traveling the mountain side at first there was a cage and then not, it wasn’t working very well but we were still ok what was said was something, something fast and then I was close up, an inch away, into the face of another perhaps or the same, eyes with cataracts and a sharp nose smile.

At least this time you weren’t wearing your Pokemon amulet around your neck, in that dream I couldn’t get it off.

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Reel Artists Film Festival at the Al Green Theatre presents Louise Bourgeois: The Spider, The Mistress and The Tangerine

Posted by admin in Art Writing on February 27th, 2010

This excellent film that brought the viewers, Carolyn Zeifman, Documentary Filmmaker and wife of Fimmaker David Cronenberg, and I, as well as a full theatre,  into Louis Bourgeois` world , was made in 2008 by Marion Cajori and Amei Wallach, and it ran 99 minutes.The Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre Al Green Theatre is a fantastic theatre to see an art film. One of the makers was present for the  introduction, in a great pair of red shoes, and is very accomplished in her own right having written eight novels and two essays and managed to interview this very edgy tempermental sculptor, installation artist, genius who almost smashed a peice of pottery in her presence.

The opening of this film reminded me of the film Spider,  ironically since she is probably most famous for her giant metal spider sculptures, Care saw one at the Tate Modern, the music, the brick, the broken glass and then it became a documentrary.

Well I suppose the spider is her mother, the mistress is well her father`s mistress of course and the tangerine is a sculpture of her that her father would cut out at the dinner table of her without a penis.

This film is fantasitc as is this 98 year old artist. She is an inspiration. What a title.

Born in France in 1911 obvioulsy to rich bourgeois parents, abandonned by her mother, obsessed with the seamstress (the seamstress`s room where sex was learned about) the mistress, meant to be her governess, and her father. She went to art shcool in France and met her husband, Arthur Goldwater a primative art historian who took her to New York. They had three sons and she went to the roof top and began to scuplt. She had tried painting in France in a studio there with her contemporaries and in New York found her way to deal with her anger and rage and that was to sculpt.

She was an ignored artist for years, always going against the trend of the time and one of the only women artists in rooms full of men, Breton, Duchamp, Masson, ” who she was very close to but rejected violently perhaps because they were like her father”.

There was a resurgance of interest in Bourgeios’ work by feminists in the 1970`s. Specifically the Gorilla Girls say that although Bourgeios claims to be an artist before a femminist, “Louise is our icon none-the-less”.

Once her husband died, who she said was like her mother, her brain, and not her father, her heart, she found Jerry, a man much, much younger than her, the age of her sons and who looks like her sons, who was somehow like her governess, her fathers mistress, and also like her father and it released something in her so that she could do her best and happiest 25 years of work.

Her art is very sexual , very passionate and very angry at times, as is she. To see her in her pink faux fur coat and sequinned hat walking around her installation entitled “The Child’s bedroom” or was it “the red room” with mirrors and a bed and hands and lamps. (no question mark yet sorry) is a beautiful very French thing.

She could “ put out an amazing amount of psychic energy, unlike most people, but she could also be a psychic vampire if you let her, if you didn`t leave her, I called her my french mistress“ one of her curator`s and agent said. She would often have fits and smash her pottery. Better to “smash her sculpture“ then people, she said. She smashed one that took her 25 years to put together again. An Upright figure with utters coming out of it’s pelvis, maybe 8 facing upwards.

There is a great picture of her holding a giant penius that she sculpted. She continuously fondles and feels things as she speaks throughout the film. She is quite feminine and masculine.

She still lives in Brooklyn and has people over on Sundays to discuss art and life, I wouldn’t have minded a bit of her there or on the street but then at 98 she’s on the street in the studio with the film crew. An absolutely facinating woman with a direct connection to her unconscious, she ” is unconscious”.

Abstract Art, Al Green Theatre, Art History, Arthur Goldwater, artist, artlocal21, Breton, Carloyn Zeifman, Caroline Blakiston, David Cronenberg, Duchamp, femminist, film festival, Gorilla Girls, Ichiyo Nagata, Installation Art, Louise Bourgeois, Margaret Hindson, Masson, Miles Nadal JCC, New York, Paris, Potter, Pottery, Reel Artists Film Festival, sculptor, Sculpture, Tate Modern, The Mistress, The Spider, The Tangerine, Toronto, women artists

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Screening New Snow at The Power Plant

Posted by admin in Art Writing on February 27th, 2010

Walking in a few minutes late it felt like I was entering a futurist opera. Pitch black, thirty or so silouetted chairs and people  infront of the fuzzy purple screen, the opera blaring. The feeling was intense. This was his opening film, not more than 10 minutes, and I loved it. The old style stereo I know so well mixed with humourous still photos, when I say still I mean not a camera panning, of flowers and waves. I felt it was an ode to the experiment in panning from the 60`s and the moving waves might have been at the end of Wavelength had it been made today. This was shot at a cottage and the movement and the still flowers reminded me of a man and woman from the mans perspective. It was poignant because of this and the out of focus attempts to turn the dial filmed me with feelings and emotions thinking of my grandfather and father.

“Any Complaints“ Mr Snow asked, hands in his pockets sheepishly smiling at the end of the two films. The second one being Reverberlin.

This was an hour long filmed concert inpart o rin whole in Berlin, that is the question I would ask now, with Snow at the piano and one of his band members playing what sounded like a diggery do with his mouth only and the other member playing the saxophone. “We`ve played together for 20 years,“ Snow told the audience and it showed. The music was unsycopated Jazz and the film was quite distorted and unsyncopated (or not in sync) itself. However the music playing was always with the appropriate instrument.

It was difficult to be forced to watch the mouth of the diggerydo man in such close up. At times it seemed he was ejaculating, at times he seemed angry and it was at times frightening, his mouth and jagged teeth toughing the microphone, his head being distorted by the camera, pulling him apart.

The saxophone player was blurred with the background and the lights behind him, the effect was like a japanese painting perhaps and was beautiful to look at, at times.

Once the viewer accepted being in this world and mostly in the face of this white bearded diggery do man it was a fate one accepted but not without an uncomfortable fight. One`s life strangely flashing before one`s eyes, Anne Francis, writer, editor, television maker, pointed out.

Snow`s piano playing was impressive and his style very unique. I did miss the blurring of reality or more the close ups that disintegrated reality and the distorions for example the ones at the end of the concert, it did feel as if they were in a recording studio in the basment and in Snows house and then to see them stand up and take a bow on a stage was very interesting and their bodies digitized outwards from their stomachs, it made the viewer unsure as to weather or not that was a video mistake at first but then it became clear it was on purpose, just.

During the Q and A Snow mentioned something interesting about sound and video, that they were connected with video in a way they aren`t connected in film.

“Any complaints?“ Snow so charming asks.  (My question mark is working now, out of French mode I guess, do they not ask questions in France?) Yes Susan Harris, environmentally conscious fashion designer extrodinaire, it was cute and funny.

No Mr. Snow, you are a gentleman and that film was something no woman would make, however, we certainly learnt about men from the experience. And the subconscious interplay, male and female, within the audience had many levels to it that are still dawning on me, right Sue how about you?

Again how did he do it?

Grandma`s Nephew may be next...

The Michael Snow retrospective continues on at The Power Plant until March 7th.

Abstract Art, Anne Francis, artlocal21, Canadian Art, Michael Snow, Music, Music Video, Reverberlin, Susan Harris, The Power Plant, Toronto, unsyncopated, Video Art, Wavelength

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Wavelength screening with Michael Snow and Elizabeth Legge hosted by the Power Plant at the Drake Underground

Posted by admin in Art Writing on February 19th, 2010

My first time seeing this amazing experimental film from Michael Snow made in 1967 was last night at the Drake Underground hosted by the PowerPlant and Elizabeth Legge the scholar, Art Historian, Professor at University of Toronto and author, who wrote a beautiful book on this film, which I look forward to reading. The room was packed and it didn’t look like I would get a seat.

“I can’t see in the dark”, Eric Woodley said, film and theatre composer and art critic for Canandian Art, as he walked up to me standing on the stairs, which of course hit me with all of it’s meaning during the film when I was sitting in front about five feet away from the screen. An excellent venue for this and the opening film, 10 minutes, an experiment in panning. The stereo, the bed, the discussion, the woman on the phone, the the flash of her naked at the end…

Wavelength, 45 minutes, took me on a journey through to the open window. Professor Legge gave a very interesting inspiring brief lecture at the beginning comparing cinema to great works of literature and french theory and there was a lovely Q and A at the end on a lovely sofa…I had the need to focus on the open window as the camera, “this film is all hand made” Snow told the audience, zooms slowly from one corner into, well “I don’t want to give away the ending”, said Legge, but I will.

I found myself completely enthralled and had a very personal experience with this film and an epiphany at the very end. It was right in front of my eyes, the damage and that it’s for “dissemination and teaching” Legge said. “Not the graceful introduction and transition I was hoping for,” Katie Crisp, curator for the Power Plant,  said gracefully transitioning from the film to the Q and A. Just as the film jumps, the superimposed image, at the end to take you into the final image…

Filmaker David Cronenberg and Documentary Filmaker Carolyn Zeifman wanted to be there but they were dealing with a new situation with his new film in the works, one of many, about Freud and Jung and Sabina Spielrein, from the book given to him by me,  A Most Dangerous Method, and then the play he found The Talking Cure, and it is fascinating, which now has Viggo to play Freud which is very exciting. He saw Wavelengths‘ debut at the Issac Gallery and “remembers it as if it were yesterday.”

Micheal Snow lived on our street growing up as a child and my first and only 10minute video from high school entitled “The Art of Non-Verbal Language” was I see now an ode to him.

Two men move a piece of furniture into the room.

The zoom begins.

The focus on the open window.

A man and a woman walk into the room.

The woman closes the window, I for a moment was quite claustrophobic until the man put on strawberry fields and then and only then could I be somewhat incarcerated, and enjoy looking around, reminded of Foucault here, Madness and Civilization,  with the two people in the room and forget eventually about the window being closed, I did have to check it at one point and was nonchalantly pleased that there was a crack left open.

We can’t just live outside forever can we?

This film made me aware of the exploration available to us in film regarding architecture and distance and art and nature and the most interesting of all human nature.

The yellow chair Mr Snow painted, also a sculptor at that time, like many abstract art pieces were perhaps later coloured or around that time as well, was comforting until it became clear that the large wooden handsome desk chair was turned out, as well one can’t see in the bright. The white outs were comforting but not the faded white outs. The richness of colour was always welcoming and wanted, the turned out desk chair was worrying and reminded me of the Martin Kippenberger furniture exhibit based on Kafkas Amerika, that was on at the MOMA in May last year, the office furniture, and the large window panes with the old writing out the windows. I found myself at times wanting to read the writing, some 1950’s writing or even earlier I’m sure. I would have to see the film again and take note of where that was exactly.

This sense of the power dynamic is tied to the desk and chair and yellow chair, the one with out the power sits there but the larger chair is turned out which is kind of distressing. I hate a chair turned out empty from a desk, I always turn it back and that desk, I have one just like it in my very own middle room, and then the man with the beard comes in shot maybe and dies and maybe he had the power and you are sad he is going and finally he is gone and then you can focus on sitting in the yellow chair. I thought of my older daughter here and at the beginning and what you  might think about with out him there or without the power there. It hit me right at the base of my scull. And the sounds the drone also factory like in some ways and the buses and the workers but in the room it is art and a factory.

The woman in the fur coat comes in, who is gorgeous and also looks like a man and calls a man and says there is a man dead on the floor and he has to come and take care of it. And then her ghostly image replayed and she has passed too. You realize here how amazing a person is and what they can bring when it is a close up rather than every one so far away.

One does also deal with the closed window, the forced power dynamic and death, by looking at the pictures on the wall and trying to decipher what they are of. When it goes above the yellow chair and onward, I don’t want to spoil the ending…I thought it was a poorly done landscape painting for the longest time but it turns out its a beautiful photograph, and the two at the top like Hiroshima maybe…what was the other one?

The quality of print was excellent,Professor Legge mentioned on the sofa, the grainy pink shadows so beautiful. I thought of closeness and my youngest daughter and wanted to go there instead and fought until the superimposed jump into the water and I dove in…well was hit with it really but first, the waves did ” look like clouds”, as Dennis Reid, head of Canadian art at the AGO and professor of Canadian art at the University of Toronto, mentioned. I saw faces and animal shapes emerging and then the “epiphany”, that someone mentioned from the audience which hit the nail right on the head so to speak,  that is, foreground, then to the distance and then back and hit with the truth right in front of my face. “Everytime,” Professor Reid said when I turned to look at him. So now I have to see it again, it must be a different epiphany everytime right??

How did he do it?

A Most Dangerous Method, Aaron Woodley, Abstract Art, Adam Russell Hunter, AGO, Amy Cormier, Art History, artlocal21, Bertrand Russell, Brandon Cronenberg, British, Caitlin Cronenberg, Canadian Art, Carl Jung, Caroline Blakiston, Caroline Waterlow, Carolyn Zeifman, Colleen Hixenbaugh, Dance, David Cronenberg, Denise Cronenberg, Dennis Reid, Elizabeth Legge, Eric Woodley, Erin Parton, Experimental Film, Fashion, film, Food, Humber School for Writer’s, Jeffery Nesker, Jennifer Evans, Johanna Reynolds, Katherine Mulherin Gallery, Katie Crisp, Lisa Deanne Smith, Literature, Madness and Civilization, Martin Kippenberger, Melanie Janisse, Meredith Woodley, Michael Snow, Michel Foucault, MOMA, Music, Nancy Friedland, New York, OCAD, P.G. Tarr, Painting, Photography, Ron Sexsmith, Russell Hunter, Ryerson, Sabina Spielrein, script doctor, Sigmund Freud, Sreenplay, Stephen Bulgar Gallery, Stephen Zeifman, Stewart Jones, Susan Harris, Susan Sontag, Textiles, The Drake Underground, The Gladstone Hotel, The Power Plant, The Talking Cure, The White Squirrel, Toronto, U of T, Video Art, Viggo Mortensen, Vladimir Spicanovic, Wavelength, Wendy Schor-Haim, Zachary Kellum, Zoots

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