Friday, January 6, 2012

"Love falls down and covers the people"

I'd meant to blog this much earlier, of course; put it down to what in the local vernacular is called "quake brain", a state of mind in which things are misplaced, forgotten, fall off the back of the desk, dry up, falter, and generally slip through your fingers. Quake brain (I loathe this and other chummy cliched coinings around Christchurch's natural disaster, but it's an accurate description, and I don't have other words for it) is a bit like that strange fog you experience in the first days and weeks after a baby is born, when shock and exhaustion and a new hypervigilance renders you temporarily a spectator in the world rather than a participant. You are out of sorts with the world; you have misplaced your agency; you sit, and wait, and watch, while around you the current of history keeps moving. I imagine "quake brain" is a modern term for a very old thing.

What I missed, in the fog and dust of the past few months, is a desire to publicly acknowledge a series of beautiful collaborations arising from the inclusion of my daughter's story 'This is about earthquakes' in the literature category for the annual Mix and Mash competition. I was very much moved both by the inclusion of the text by organisers Pip Adam and Fiona Rigby, and by the new works which were created as a result, inspired in part by my daughter's experience of the February earthquake in Christchurch.

Here are some of the remixed works derived from 'This is about earthquakes', with a short excerpt under each link:

Hera Bird's prose poem 'The Mountain' (from which the title of this post is, in turn, drawn):
"We want to believe that love will keep us safe. But love will not keep us safe. Love has no central nervous system. Love looks like it's wearing a white hat. The mountain is covered with love."

Megan Clayton's poem 'Untitled (This is about earthquakes)':

And Brooke Phelan's delightful illustrations:

Click through on the links above to read the new works. And you can read more entries in the literature category of Mix and Mash here.

No comments: