Mari's Wildwood

A Rabbit Hole-and-a-Half

HomeBodyHome

I wished for a while I had more to say, but what I really meant was I wish I had something different to say. Sophisticated enough. Mature enough. Interesting enough. Maybe the best things to write about are the ones I take for granted, because they come from a different place when I already understand them. The metaphor for the body as a home/house is hardly new, but I have found myself being drawn to it again and again recently, in new ways. If my body is a house, then does that mean that I could refit the old, soul-crushing, woman-crushing narrative to say that a woman’s place is in her body? To embody herself? To take self-ownership? To not feel chased away, wish she could leave it and have a different one? Even if it has been invaded, degraded or robbed, even if the wiring, plumbing and foundation don’t work quite right. I write about knitting or my grandmother’s sewing and baking advice. In her day, simply because they were domestic activities, they were stereotypically feminine. Women were/are expected to be seen and not heard, to make things but not create, to use their bodies but not inhabit them. I’m sure my more “traditional” family members wouldn’t complement the purse I made if they knew it was a model uterus and vagina, complete with all the trimmings. I want to transform things passed to me if I don’t like how they’ve been named or who has named them. I want to put self and choice into things I’ve been forced to take on, or patted on the head for. I want to create things and say things and live inside things that are enough for me.

Blog Prompt: Week 10

Due: 8 (or 9) posts. Due Wednesday, Week 10, 11:00am.

Objective:

Assemble a narrative from the blog posts you’ve written this quarter.

There are three parts to your final blog assignment:

Part 1: Clean Up and Tag Your Posts

  • Review all of your posts from the quarter. There should be a total of 45-63 (9 weeks of prompts x 5-7 posts).
  • Make sure your posts are correctly categorized according to the week they were written.
  • Make sure none of your posts are categorized as “uncategorized.”
  • Make sure that all the categories appear in your blog’s primary menu.
  • For most of you, there should be categories for Weeks 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9 and “Blog Narrative”…but if you did not go on the field trip, you will also have Week 5. If you haven’t already, you need to add this category and make sure it is in your Custom Menu…refer to the How-To instructions on this topic.
  • Tag each post to identify reoccurring themes, subjects or ideas.
  • If you have not repaired or addressed any technical problems with your site called to your attention by faculty or a classmate, now is the time.

Part 2: Cumulative Blog Narrative

  • As you review and tag your posts from the past weeks, select one representative post from each of the 7 (or 8) weeks for which you were assigned a prompt.
  • These posts are the elements (events) of a cumulative narrative. Together they should tell a kind of story…the story of your independent creative inquiry.
  • There is no need to alter the original posts, though please do correct any typos. Simply categorize them in the new “Blog Narrative” category, in addition to their original category. Do not remove them from their original category! A post can be in more than one category. The posts you choose will magically appear in two places on your blog: in their original weekly category and in the new category.

Part 3: Process/Artist’s Statement—the 8th Post

  • After you’ve selected a post from all 7 (or 8) weeks, write a new, final post to serve as a culminating statement—a kind of postscript—for this creative inquiry you’ve been engaged in throughout the quarter.
  • Categorize it in the “Blog Narrative” category.
  • Because it will have been written last, it will appear first in the list of your “Blog Narrative” posts, will provide context for the posts and for the blog as a part of your broader creative endeavor this quarter, and also will lend a sense of completion or wholeness to the body of your work.

Hungry

I’m beginning to realize that it’s not always possible to save the best for last and that some things are better as a whole. –Clair

One day, I woke up with transparent skin and intense hunger. I felt famished even. Did I need to eat? Probably not, but I wanted the taste. Dark chocolate. Strawberries. Green tea flavored anything. I discovered I no longer had digestive organs, like feeding a plastic doll. I chewed and swallowed, and it could be seen through my rice paper skin, and everything had all the salty-sour-bitter-sweetness of plain tap water. Torture. Like if I still had sinuses and ovaries and both were giving me shit at the same time. Cravings without the ability to taste anything. The solid weight and waxy surface of a chocolate bar might as well have been a candle or crayon. Forget the bright crush of a strawberry, I could have eaten any poisonous berry I wanted, without consequence. Everything was right in front of me, green tea on ice sweating into my hand, and I could not feel or absorb anything. What was even more peculiar was how no one noticed me standing on the tracks, then not feeling or absorbing the train. It was like if wind went from gas to solid for a second, then back again. I didn’t need to scratch my head, but I did. The hunger was worse now that I knew it would probably never go away. So naturally, I jumped into the sea, down to the dark deep, where the divers don’t go. Slippery creatures acknowledged me in the prehistoric darkness. Relief. I nestled into a trench to rest. “So this is where we go,” I thought. I was numb before, but now pulsing on all sides from the pressure like a hug from all directions. It pushed my abdominal cavity into submission, and salt water filled my mouth. Release. Having lost all senses in a stimulating world, it only made sense to me I’d regrow my nerves in complete deprivation. Some day, I will start over.

6/1

My right arm, let’s say, is a patient constellation of my brother’s anger.

Lost in Montana

East to west

Brother was thirsty

Brother was spent

Fist in my mouth

Fist in my mouth

Grew fifteen times

Wrestled me to the ground

Me to the ground

Belle and Sebastian

In the background

Me on the ground

Me on the ground

Me on the ground

Grew fifteen times

Me on the ground

Lost in Washington

Brother’s disease

Grew fifteen times

Got stuck in my teeth

Stuck in my teeth

Stuck in my teeth

And when I awoke

I started to choke

Brother did cease

But it stuck in my teeth

Stuck in my teeth

Stuck in my teeth

Me on the ground

Stuck in my teeth

Crystallized Moments

*Decaying from within all that constitutes “Me” or “We” or “Humanity-Sara

 

Carbon smoke glass mistake

Pink sugar frosted cake

Crystallizes moments

Memory won’t let go

Like letters in cement.

Princess cut incisions

Difficult decisions

Melt ugly in the sun.

Separate positions,

Pack possessions and run.

Pickup bed tethered pair,

Two Adirondack chairs,

Make last connections.

Sometimes fireworks fall

In other directions.

 

So Brave

“Things that Last of Us Ellie taught me…That I want more female protagonists in my life.” –Lina

That word, “bravery”

Leaves a bad taste in my mouth

Like the “you go, girl!” flavored cookie

Given like participation ribbons to us

Who walk alone at night,

Who shave our heads

Who don’t “dress for our body type”

Who enter fields dominated by men

Who eat said cookie,

And don’t feel guilty about the calories!

Bravery is authenticity,

Authenticity is vulnerability

And vulnerability is defined

By what other people find

Embarrassing

Uncomfortable

Repulsive

“Deep, man!”

So I ask, should we be “dare” to be brave?

Or is it another box, a trap set to think we’re escaping something

By doing the opposite?

Blog Prompt: Week 9

MAY 27, 2017 / ANNE DE MARCKEN / 0 COMMENTS / EDIT

Due:

5-7 posts, uploaded to your blog no later than Friday, 10:00am.

Objective:

Again using the looping technique practiced in class and given once before as a generative blog prompt, use the writing of your classmates—or your own writing—as a leaping off point. Revisit a post you want to take further or examine from a changed perspective. Go somewhere you haven’t before. Go deeper. It’s your last chance.

Prompt:

  1. Every day, read a variety of your own and your classmates’ blog posts from the previous weeks.
  2. Every day, select one of these posts to use as the leaping-off point. Choose posts that inspire you in a variety of ways.
  3. Draw one line from the selected post.
  4. Write this line on “a fresh page” outside the blog environment.
  5. Write for 5 minutes, drawing from your own experiences, questions and observations.
  6. Read what you just wrote. This is not your blog post.
  7. Pull forward one line.
  8. Write this line on “a fresh page.”
  9. Again, write for 5 minutes.
  • Thisstill is not your blog post.
  • Select a line.
  • Use this line to start the final loop; write it on a fresh page.
  • Write for 5 minutes.
  • Reread this. Still not your blog post.
  • Now, having done all this generative, exploratory work, write again—synthesize, refine, edit. Craft a finished paragraph that synthesizes the ideas, feelings, observations and images that issued from the loops. To “craft” is to pay attention to the ways form and content work together to convey meaning. This final short piece may be a “snapshot,” a scene, a nugget of insight, a series of questions…something that feels complete in its own way.
  • Thisisyour post! Copy and paste it into your blog.
  • IMPORTANT: At the start of each post, beforeyour own finished writing:
    1. write the original line you used as your inspiration in quotes,
    2. credit the author by first name only,
    3. hyperlink the line to its source. Use Hypertext How-To for help.

Note: A “Looping How-to” has been posted separately. It provides a tiny bit more guidance on the looping exercise.

Blog Community Service:

Throughout the week, read and respond to your classmates’ posts. Remember, critique is reserved for structured workshop settings.

Formal Requirements:

  • Posts may include images and text.
  • All content must be original—of your own making.
  • There is no minimum or maximum length for this assignment. Keep the publishing format in mind.
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