Postcards

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December 9, 2015.   Warburton Pantry. 

 

The postcards have arrived today from the printers: beautiful, decadent cards with photography by Kate Baker and design by Ann Roberts Graphic Design.  I love the softness in the texture of the card, the creamy borders that bestow an antique look, and the 1920s postcard style on the back.  It was important to me to make a ‘real’ postcard that hopefully someone will write a little greeting on, stick on a stamp, and send in the mail.  The first one I will send will be to my sister, Dani, also a writer, with whom I have a long tradition of handwritten correspondence.  Kate’s portrait of me (seen at the top of this page) is on the front of the cards.

On the back, you see this…

 

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I intend to leave little piles of them, or maybe sometimes just a single one, with my own handwritten inscription, in the public spaces where I write.  I have various performance artworks happening or in planning, but this is my personal one, quiet and gentle.  It’s my performance artwork of a daily practice: writing, my practice enclosed by the small rituals of my tea preparations and sipping.

I put my journal on the cafe table.  The tea paraphernalia arrives, and slowly I wait for a few moments as it steeps and reaches optimal temperature, and then I take the little milk jug from the cup, pour in my milk, turn the pot a couple of times, arrange the strainer over the surface of the cup (it always reminds me of a delicate bridge suspended over water), and pour the tea, a little stream at a time. I don’t take sugar, but I swirl the spoon without touching the bottom, to get the tea to the right colour.  And I sip.  I may open my journal then, but sometimes I leave it a while and think… starting the work deep on the inside.  I am in my own space, but I’m aware of what’s going on around me too, aware of the people who pass by, all intricately laced up in the poems and stories of their lives.

 

If you comment here and you are one of the first ten to do so, I will send you a postcard.

 

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I’ve been working on a poem called ‘Bleu Myosotis‘. It is long and chunky and I’ve been looking at John Berryman’s Dream Songs for his arrangement of lines.  I’m noticing the relief I find in writing poetry.  It gives me a sense of at-homeness that I’ve not really ever experienced in prose writing even though nearly all have my publications so far have been in prose. I like the presence of time and timing in poetry.  I like the spaciousness.  I like to dance and in poetry I am in movement.  When I write poetry, I am dancing.