Saturday 15 December 2012

Solid Sodium

Solid bodies under soft sodium hue
Moving swiftly in shades of orange.
As fast as they can, seeming oblivious

An unnoticed shadow scurries behind
Sometimes ahead, sometimes three;
People melt past in unconscious dance

Of black, pale and paler as light's cast
Circling, stretching, gracefully arching
A spectrally synchronised pas de trois

Friday 14 December 2012

Belief suspended at the RAI

Pain. Some will go out of their way to avoid it, making use of all medical science to dull the sensations and make the feeling go away. Even the medical terms used euphemise it; a 'sharp scratch', 'mild discomfort' ensure that you are safely cocooned and protected from negativity. I don't pretend to know about chronic pain...I'm lucky, but there are migraine moments when my head, neck and eyes are clenched in stomach churning agony. It is a normal reaction for me to blindly reach for pain relief and sink into a proper sleep.

Except secretly I don't always immediately take tablets. I don't know why and I've never really questioned this but to lie there and feel the familiar ache is both comforting and oddly rhythmic. Without that monthly incredible river of brain sickness on that right hand side, I'm not sure how I'd feel. I consciously and carefully explore what is going on in my body observe the blood pumping into a furnace like head and wonder how much I can take. No, this probably isn't rational but a lecture last night gave a vague insight into what might be going on.

Friday 7 December 2012

War, memory and museums

Of all the lectures so far this one interested me the most even though some of the ideas Dr Gabriel Koureas presented I want to argue with. I remember being deeply affected by a visit to the Imperial War Museum's Holocaust galleries, as well as visiting the Wiener Archives earlier in the year, so I read the entire suggested lecture journal/book list with fascinated interest.

'Traumatic recall is full of fleeting images the percussion of blows, sounds and movement of the body' wrote Roberta Coulson in 1995. Ordinary memories are something we can recall or narrate however this is not the case with traumatic memories. There is a break in the narrative. Someone who experiences war finds it hard to construct a narrative for that event. They experience embodied flashbacks/memories.

Wednesday 5 December 2012

Shhh - do not disturb

Apologies for the brief hiatus on the Utterances. I'm currently in the middle of a piece of work looking at the use of space in Chris Orr's 'Road to Damascus' and Wenceslaus Hollar's 'Long View'. It's probably one of the hardest things I've attempted to make sense of since I tried to do something clever like discuss the existence of different kinds of scientific proof (demonstration and argumentation) in Copernicus's De revolutionibus orbium coelestium. Yes I know. Remind me to put that one up here at some point.

Anyway I blogged about these two prints previously and was so taken with their connection that I decided to do my first MA course work on them. That was an easy task: writing up a lecture from notes is a straightforward proposition. For this 5000 word academic essay I'm having to actually think about complex ideas about slippery subjects. Like space, for instance.