sine qua non

Artist: Cornelie Tollens Emotions, 1997
Artist: Cornelie Tollens
Emotions, 1997

We joke about taking it all the way as the planets revolve around us. Facing one another, like borders, we exchange memories as cash and carry each others extremes to calibrate our balances.

In What Is Found There, Adrienne Rich notes that the core of metaphors are “resemblance in difference.” And Gloria Anzaldua said, “The resistance to change in a person is in direct proportion to the number of dead metaphors that person carries.” There is much to explore within these spaces of similarity and syncretistic juxtapositions. Metaphors are essential ingredients, catalysts really, that shape how we will tell others what we see.

Navigating aspects of a culture, one that feels more about reading and performing than being, only partially explains my reoccurring dreams of stairs. Traveling east to the prairie to fulfill a mission that will close a chapter of home that has few memories that aren’t seeped in melancholic filters may be another immediate interpretation. It’s equally likely, and as obvious, this vision is based on that lost time in Chicago. The recalled memory is only violent sound: bones on concrete.

All these core stories want to be told.

a series of slopes

artist: Milk Lake
artist: Milk Lake


A woman with giant silver hoop earrings
the inside dangling with wooden replicas of Africa
(mistakenly thought to be Texas)
eats a whole roast beef sandwich in one minute
then wipes the evidence on the inside of her blue wool coat.


A cart filled with two drums, a cymbal, and two orange Home Depot buckets
(acting as drums)
rolls into a man reading Sovereignty and Authenticity
as a woman says “making $105,000 a year is exploitation.”