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The Melancholy May 2, 2013: Everybody was feeling the melancholy. Each felt it in her own way. They used the word melancholy because of global post history. The humour became a politics. The ones who claimed they weren’t melancholic were in denial. Theirs was the deepest form. Some were just tired, a word they would repeat to themselves vaguely. There was dread. [...] by

“everything is leaf. . .” April 29, 2013: [caption id="attachment_66089" align="alignright" width="500"] Sketch of Old and New World Vegetation by Goethe[/caption] As did Rousseau, Goethe botanized. At the De l’Allemagne show now up at the Louvre, pages from his herbarium are exhibited alongside more recent ones from Paul Klee. They’re near Goethe’s ink-wash sketches of clouds, a [...] by

Labyrinth April 22, 2013: The shut bud is blackish, dense, thumb-sized, upwards-thrusting all elegant on tall hollow stem from a low radiant whorl of narrow leaves. It smells like nothing at all. It’s only after my walk, when I see on Facebook that Elisabeth Workman has posted its portrait, that I learn the name of the flower that’s filling the newly thinned copse. [...] by

Observatory April 15, 2013: I’m still reading Thomas Bernhard. Now I read in an attic room in Rotterdam, bright and clear and sparse, with midnight blue carpet. There’s a skylight and three tall windows. It’s my observatory; I’m in Hoeller’s garret, transplanted. I write to my friend Pascal Poyet about reading a passage about the main character’s insomnia, as [...] by

Transformers April 3, 2013: I’m in an isolated country house reading Thomas Carlyle as the crop sprayers pass over the fields. Sartor Resartus; both colza and wheat: the treatment cycles are never synchronized. My own synchrony with the place emerges when I rush upstairs to pull in the airing duvets, shut the windows as I hear the tractor-engines start up. Otherwise the [...] by

Journal, Day Five June 30, 2006: Now, all art is impossible. That is its special function. The perfume dispensing machine in the Women’s toilet at the Owen Sound bus station is called the Resemblance Distributor. A one dollar coin could procure a simulacrum of Opium, Obsession or Poison. “If there had been no repressions, no stake, truth would have cast off the [...] by

Journal, Day Four June 29, 2006: Jupebeast, manga-boho, relookage: these are today’s words. I was trawling for anything about Tsumori Chisato. She’s a Tokyo- based designer I discovered this May in the glorious archive called le Bon Marche. My Visa card procured one garment. The strictness of black haberdashery, the slight sheen of the better, sturdy, mannish polished [...] by

Journal, Day Three June 28, 2006: Will someone go to the Guggenheim to see the Zaha Hadid show, and report back? I once sat on a red ponyskin couch she made. It was the rumpus room of some eerily wealthy Parisian collectors whose house I was writing about for Nest magazine. They had coupled it I think with a big Basquiat canvas, was it, or maybe something lumpy from the support et [...] by

Journal, Day Two June 27, 2006: I have wanted to read this novel, Tous Les Chevaux du Roi since 1986, when I first read about the author, Michele Bernstein, in Greil Marcus’ Lipstick Traces. This would have been my introduction to Situationism, that alluring French counter-tradition of radical ambling. I lost my copy of the Marcus books years ago, I think when I offered a pile [...] by

Journal, Day One June 26, 2006: In this village, in fair weather the accepted neutral site for mutual discussion of current events (whether political or meteorological or agricultural) is the bridge. A person standing on the bridge, leaning over the stone balustrade, looking down through the water and weeds for fish, often smoking, is signaling their availability for discussion. [...] by