^folk, (o)=e

excerpt from my journal:

———————
“I think there’s really something magical about folk music. I’m sitting in Connemara in a pub and there’s these 3 guys just chillin’ with a few traditional instruments (staples. guitar, accordion, folk guitar, mandolin i think…?). Every time I listen to this stuff I get swept away to another world and time, where people performed to share and to keep things alive — when stories were told instead of written… when stories were sung and danced instead of told. Why does this idea hold so much power for me?
Perhaps because I am a writer. I write stories down. I want folklore to be squeezed into 2D, but no one can quite seem to manage it — there’s an element of human flesh and blood and experience in it deeper than anything that can be nailed down on a page in black and unmoving white. The whole give-response mechanism is truly different. Utterly different. It cannot be flattened — it IS music. It flies through the air and buries itself in people’s hearts, and people’s hearts give back… The nature of this creating is continual and communal. An holistic expression of Heidegger’s ‘Being’… ha! I love it.
Joy.”

c. Mary Kathryn Gough, spring 2006, clifden, connemara

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Hilariously Flippant Lecture Quotes !!!

Sometimes looking back at your class notes from University is really enlightening… other times… it goes like this:

don’t blame Catherine, Henry…we’ll get you some fertility counselling” (on Henry VIII)

wife #4 was just butt ugly, you know, being Dutch” (on Anne of Cleves (@ a Dutch Uni))

stronger the orthodoxy, stronger the proof” (on Fresian gin)

gold is worth s****!” (on colonization in Virginia)

these guys can’t organize lunch!” (on colonists)

you don’t love me – you’ve never charged me before” (on America toward England)

he can’t even commit suicide, he’s such a schmoe” (on Archie Jones in White Teeth)

shut up, boy, I know better” (to student)

I know how you feel, whatever your name is…” (to same student)

you’re just being cynical, ____ – I’m shocked” (dead pan)

there are some that disagree with me, but you know, they’re stupid”

never has my inner woman been more pleased” (pub-quote)

so piracy…like pirates?” (student)

So many belly laughs… maybe it helps to have been there. But still…

 

Grey

 

I’m still in this place. Sometimes it seems I never leave.
*

Gallery, 2014

Imagine, if you will
a gallery piece
installed,
a row of plants at progressing
stages of growth, lined up in
pots and flash-frozen in time, breathing cold puffs,
crystalline
almost synthetic.

Imagine also
the moment the exhibit
starts
to disintegrate, freeing
gouged and frozen cells one by
one by one by
one in
unwilling surrender to Death
nutrient-free, famished, value
less.

Imagine, if you will
our lives, taken
out of sine, cosine, curve:

motion
less.

 

~ KG

*

The Ever-Processing Machine

I can’t find my incense. I don’t want to write. I desperately want nothing more than to write. For ever. So then, perhaps I’m just a stymied masochist at heart(less), doomed to miserable inaction for the rest of my days.

I do not dedicate myself as I should, as I need. . .

There’s a llama on my printer. A small one. A wedding gift, eight years and counting, staring me blackly in the eye. It knows. Trying to escape, my eye rests upon a small picture sat beneath my computer. It is my own babyface peering out with merrily blank baby eyes. The photo is overlaid with the thick shadow of a chain-link fence. This is me. Trapped by a shadow. Waiting for the world to do something. Trying to grasp the significance of the strange, cold eye that trains itself on me so often and aloofly clicks.

*click*

There’s so much crammed into this tiny office I could cry. I used to think I would write always and anywhere — give me a closet and a cardboard box, set me free with charcoal under a bridge and I would be unable to refrain from wordplay, perpetual swordplay with man and nature alike, taking the measure of everything by means of soul, squished then through a kind of linguistic strainer until all I had left was the juice, the essence, the concentrated taste of experience in this undeniably awkward universe.

Now that belief has shattered. It may have been true once, but I have lived into a future where I hide from myself — and everyone else — quite effectively. So here is a journal that is lacking all pretence, simply my words, simply me, all my flaws on my sleeve.

*click*

Can you see the chainlink fence?

I can. It’s all the mouldering critique in my soul. Surely if I put organic stuff in there it would become mulch instead of poison. Perhaps I am now more than part machine, and the organic materials cannot breathe. If I lived for aeons, my mouldering mulch would become the solid stuff of the planet, sandstone, limestone, volcanic rock jutting out of soft soil at awkward angles, baring its bones to escape unfathomable pressure. But I don’t want to be the solid stuff of earth, I want to grow. Become green in the sunlight, swing in gusts of wind, evaporate through expanding skin and rise to join the clouds, journeying towards a body of water and aching for the ocean deeps. Even the rocky shore submits to the tireless ministrations of moisture.

*click*

The cold, cyclopian eye is back. I think it wants to eat me. It’s everywhere, and I fear if I pay too much attention to it it might just absorb my essence. Like native people distrust photos, I distrust the all-seeing Eye with a maggoty, crawling kind of fear. I am sure it can erase my life, my futures, my Being in a moment’s time. How does one go about retrieving one’s essence from the maw of the beast? Can it ever regain its form? Its motivation? Its mind? I am not sure, but I will fight.

*click*