Friday, 29 October 2010

Just heading to town to see what's happened in the kiln...

fingers crossed. In the meantime, here's the poem for Juana...


When I doodled
my own name

in dirt and sand and snow
I was also learning how

to map the cursive sierras and barrancas
of her name,

the swash J we share,
mem, mu, the sign for water,

the many aleph snarled
in its current like fish eggs,

Juana Aguinaga Mares.

Resh, rho, the head,
he, the praying or calling figure,

shin or sigma. Only as we designed
and redesigned our first signatures

am I tutoring my hand in the quickstep
of her name, her names,

Juana Aguinaga Mares
Juana Iñiquez Mares

and the stylus to hop and prod and probe
in its plateau'd clay-flats like a wading bird.

With the acute awl of its bill
it's hiding her name in her name

Juana Aguinaga Mares.

Here is the codicil,
the indelible petroglyph of her name,

here are its watersheds,
here is its chaff or till,

here are the untranslateable
canyons and the lunar basin

and range of the name
of her daughter's mother and her mother's

mi hijita

Juana Aguinaga Mares.

1 comment:

Nancy said...

Hi Jen,
I just got back from the "400 Women" exhibition at Shoreditch Town Hall, which has been extended to Dec. 5th. It's incredibly powerful & moving.

I saw your pierced/inscribed clay tablets-in-tins. Your accompanying poem is wonderful & works well in white on black on the exhibition flyer.

I put a note on facebook about the exhibition, but you seem to have bowed out of facebook.

So, hello, well done, and I hope to see you tomorrow night at the Oxfam shop! (If you're already in London, that is...the snow has of course come south.)

All best,
Nancy Mattson