1 Aug - 11 Aug 2018
Trelex must remember the sonic tyranny of my typewriter, the leadheavy weight I carried from Brooklyn in a backpack, stopped twice by TSA. The house must remember the nail, the percussion of each letter. Maybe my staccato of thought remains in the bedroom as an echo or a ghost. Trelex remains a spirit around me, the bells of the church still ring on each of my hours. The vaulted attic roof is a synonym for the creative space of my mind, the yellowplums turn to jam on memory’s stove. I pray for the chickens and the fox of their trauma and the symbol of the eggs’ return.
I thank Trelex for the luxury of time, for the mornings when I woke just to make art all day. In New York, and I imagine in most people’s everyday lives, art can feel less like play and more like work I must get done in a set amount of time. During my residency, I didn’t feel pressed into a productivity marathon. I slipped into the hazy hot slow roll of countryside creativity. A notebook and a pen at the ever-open window of the small kitchen in the morning, basking in the sweet scent of a fresh bouquet from the garden. A big breakfast with my fellow artists. An afternoon of heavy paper and chalk or maybe a train ride to a swim in Lake Geneva. Evenings editing poems in my bedroom as fireworks flared in the dark sky. No time felt wasted. Thank you, Trelex, for the sprawling conversations with my newfound artist soulmate, Judy Pilarczyk, whom I drew a portrait of (and she also drew and painted some stunning portraits of me!). Thank you for Sallie Harker and her lovely son, Theodore, who sat as a model while the three of us artists sketched him in our unique styles. Thank you for the sudden thunderstorm that cut through the humidity as we sipped wine and watched the sun’s gold shine, unrelentingly brilliant light bouncing through the prism of downpour.
My time in Trelex helped me recover from a hard winter depression that had stalled my usual extreme productivity. I felt a bit estranged from myself as an artist (and maybe as a person), but the time I had in Trelex helped me reconnect with myself, my art, and the muse. I submitted massive amounts of work while I was in Trelex, and since I’ve been home, some visual art I made in Switzerland was selected to be published as the cover of a prominent literary magazine (they also accepted a couple of poems!). Now that I’m home, I’ve kept myself connected to the spirit of creativity I tapped into in Trelex. I sit on my back porch in the mornings and fill my notebook. I may get distracted by work and tasks and the demands of the city, but I am keeping the practice of drifting back to a book or a crayon or a pot of paint or my trusty typewriter to create a little bit more.