Spinning

It is the witching hour
All must go back to the beginning
of time
time when the cogs & wheels,
nuts & bolts, the true & false
of your existence
drips long magenta sludge
to the bottom of the
holy vortex

You stop to cry out
words form, are heard,
then disappear
Quick like a bunny
down through the hole

It is the desperate hour
your nature unravels
flaxen-haired onto
the resting place
of some unknown head

Who is that man?
What do I owe now?
Bring on the enforcers
fear is so subjective

Death creeps near the doorway
unannounced as shrill-voiced women
accuse, try to define things they
do not understand
Here you go boys, here’s a hand
women against women, now that’s
a barb to the side of the altar
mixed messages, socio-economic differences
Rubber burns in the background
fire in their eyes, singed hair,
a flip flop by the road

Will you ask no questions, have no care
for understanding past histories?
You cannot begin to understand
the hunt for present circumstances
without a compass, without a map
Can you not see?
We shirk all internal combustion
to arrive at an answer we do not heed;
to move in a circle we cannot engage
War is made of such things as sirens sing
off color & tone to the deaf of the world
Who can be given a jest such as this
surviving on vagrant morsels
Kolkata whispers in your ear?

You have come to this place
in the middle of bad returns
Heal me, once again, heal me
If there ever was a need so strong
it has come to these shores at this hour
Feel the weight of vaporization
It is heavier than you think
Light fingers spread fairy dust
birthing another portion of yourself
feather-like, filigreed, feminine
spit out the goddess within
undetermined, unpegged, not a
pigeon hole in sight

You were born in a tin pot
on a back burner
So what of it?
Golden dreams dance

Getting the Word Out: Jaggery Journal

Happily though social media I connect with people of like minds all over the world. This resulted in getting to know Satya Gummuluri on Facebook who edits a marvelous “DesiLit Arts and Literature Journal.” She graciously exposed a community of viewers to my work and me to the work of others.
http://jaggerylit.com/celeste/
While coverage is fantastic, the journal is an important forum for writers and artists. Rather than explain what it’s all about please read: http://jaggerylit.com/about/.
Thanks to all the staff and contributors of Jaggery!

If we know not who the other is, we shrink ourselves to a small world of sameness.

Look: Motherism & Gender Assigment

I stopped sitting in front of terminals & laptops as a cost and eye saving device. I also know it can get in the way of my heart work. That does not mean it has lost its worth for me as an important means of communication. Both the Gender Assignment blog & the content posted there us on area of interest among others. I hope it becomes so for you.

Also Lise Haller Baggesen Ross–look her up: https://m.facebook.com/lise.h.ross?pn_ref=story&fref=nf&ref=bookmark
http://genderassignment.tumblr.com/post/106749478255/mothernism-an-interview-with-lise-haller-baggesen

Making, reading, writing

Newly minted clamshell box for first in a series of atlas fold books

Newly minted clamshell box for first in a series of atlas fold books

Brass cast made during lost wax process of alligator toe from Louisiana

Brass cast made during lost wax process of alligator toe from Louisiana


After a week-long box making class with Barbara Mauriello at The Center for Book Arts, two brass casting sessions and a bookbinding class last week I found myself immersed in making things, which uses a different zone in the brain than writing. Reading supplements ideas, thinking expands them and making can become the result.

I am in the middle of researching a new atlas fold book that will be the second in a very long series of artists books that include maps, writing via letterpress, and other forms of bookish expression. When these things are evolving I find it not the time for long narratives on WordPress. Twitter, with its flits and snippets of ideas serves me better.

I did take a jaunt over to the Metropolitan Museum in Manhattan on Tuesday to unwind and look at frames. Prints will be the subject of investigation on Sunday when they have a talk on Durer’s Melencolia I: http://bit.ly/1kc0OMQ.

A tiny ivory book from the Met's collection

A tiny ivory book from the Met’s collection

Paper, Paper Everywhere

Rag paper making at Jim Croft's Old Ways workshop.

Rag paper making at Jim Croft’s Old Ways workshop.

It’s generally at your fingertips even in this electronic world often under your nose but is as invisible as a tree in a forest. In fact, it can be made from one. The answer to the implied riddle is Paper. In the hands of Nicholas Basbanes, the wonderfully ubiquitous item has a diverse history that is compelling when connecting points of common and not so common knowledge. Within the pages of On Paper: The Everything of Its Two-Thousand-Year History is many surprises of information making this long and well-documented tale a pleasure to read. Basbanes has the ability to spin a yarn with recorded facts of time and place, along with impressive access–even the CIA at one point. It is an adventure worth pursuing. The volume is for the general reader as well as the scholar. The bibliography is filled with tributaries large and small. Within the text there are also references of people, places and other books to be explored.

Some have found the inclusion of so many aspects of paper jump parts of the story in an unnecessary way. http://bit.ly/1kw9Py1 If you’re a person who is also fascinated with everything, you won’t be disappointed. You will learn the names and narratives of the important to the pedestrian, forgers to sensitive document purveyors, ending with a 9/11 postscript. This was not a distraction for me but an extraordinary case in point about the incredible journey a piece of paper can have in its ability to charge or change history.

Check out his website at http://www.nicholasbasbanes.com/. To hear him speak at length follow this link (50 minute interview on NPR) http://bit.ly/1iRn4f6
Find a library near you to get a copy on loan: http://www.worldcat.org/

Not Alone

A recent entry into The Price of Freedom book art at Howe Gallery.

A recent entry into The Price of Freedom book art at Howe Gallery.


The responses left in The Price of Freedom book, which encapsulate the body of work as a whole excites and encourages me to continue. This latest entry is especially heartfelt since it reflects the truth about violence against women. You feel completely alone. If my work reaches one person so they know that there are others out there whose life changes immeasurably because of rape or any other abuse, success walks with me.
Write anonymously about rape and sexual assault on http://brokennarratives.tumblr.com/.