Cinemagraph

A point of inflection is a moment of change. I was asked to write a poem about this sort of moment as a seed for a creative collaboration with Christoph Prevost, Michael Champion and David Phu.

A funny concept for a cinemagraph, which is a still photo with moving parts.

Stillness, movement, change, stasis.

Under the auspices of Sad Mag and Real Vancouver Writers Series several cinemagraphs and their accompanying texts were exhibited on November 27, 2015 in Vancouver. Raoul Fernandes, Tariq Hussain, Robin Evans, Jen Neale, Chelsea Rooney, Vivek Shraya, Stephanie Orford and Stacey McLachlan also created texts that became cinemagraphs.

Here’s mine.

On His Last Breath a Man is Running into an Empty Sky from Obscurior on Vimeo.

And here’s the text that inspired it:

On His Last Breath a Man Is Running into an Empty Sky

We used to talk through
the interstices, our breath traipsing in
and out as we accomplished tasks
in parallel lines, our time zones
bifurcating some reality we chose not to notice.

You said the crickets are noisy over Winnipeg
and your last transmission was lost; can you resend?

We are offline now.
Your electrical charges have spun out,
joined the grander yet basic forcefield
my belief system allows me to recognize.

At what point will you fade from me?
Yes, it is impossible to pinpoint the level
at which a draining bath signifies loneliness
rather than comfort. And when exactly
does the white of the boiling egg stiffen and cloud?
I want to live within the steamy
atmosphere of proximity. I won’t be the one to open
the window even though I see you running
into an empty sky, the outline of your body dispersing
like the puff of your breath in the cold.

This poem appeared in ti-TCR, the blog magazine fittingly titled “Urgency and Response.” I wrote it in response to a poem I wrote in TCR’s winter 2015 issue  based on phrases from bp nichol’s work that I tweeted as part of an international twitter project organized by angela rawlings for the bp nickel conference held in Toronto in November 2014.

A mesmerizing chain. The original poem I wrote is about transubstantiation and love. It is as if the ideas and words were handed palm by palm from artist to artist, beginning with bp nichol, through years, through book makers, through the poets on twitter, through me to these several iterations. Smoke, breath, rain: digital memory never ages. Analog memory does. It is always now on the internet. This is a memorial.

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