On Thursday March 9,  we visited the What Remains Exhibition at Gallery Gachet. This was part of an ongoing series where we write in art galleries. Here is part one of our collaged poetic response to the exhibition.

A beautiful design of fabric. She has so many faces, designed with shame, designed with thoughts,

all humanly desires wondering where they would end up.

1600 I myself, John William Gladstone. To build the world’s greatest empire together, with the bankers, where the sun never sets. Amen.

Anyone can be an empathy, they said. Beautiful creatures, the ones I love, on parallel lines. Here we go. Meet me in infinity!

Why are we born with ten fingers and ten toes? So we make more that ten friends, and have more than ten writerly friends, and from writing we can stretch and stretch into the universe of love of writing.

Only her breath like the sea, washing, watching, eating at the shoreline that was there. The current travels in circles too.

Darkness in my ears shuts the sounding sight. Life there is not. Thirty years of solitude-

Don’t talk to me of families not the nuclear kind who have three reasons not to mind what happens to me. Poor, crazy, poet, something like two-spirited, convenient to ignore . . .

We are the world, we are the people, we are firm, defined like a church steeple.

Learning is triumph over failure. And I have a question.
Do we learn who we are over the past failures? Do we learn who to love
over the past failures? Do we choose the right community over the past failures?

Stitch up pieces torn walking through the day.

I am the family loser, the Asperger freak, the one who can’t even get my life together with full time work.

I thank all the mighty mothers who murmur sequences and weave the alphabet of being acgtatcg in every one of my surging cells embedded and reincarnated in my mitochondria.

A rolling wave of deep brown sugar rises beneath her skin, growing strong by the ties that bind. The question I leave you with today is why was the universe created in the first place.

We move through darkling sound; we whisper in scintillating light. Each different all the same made from internal sight and sound.

I started when I was three. When I was bored enough to let my 84-year-old neighbour know I mattered. I would walk next door and stare at his gate and say, “You’re a useless old man and when I throw a rock at your home, your house will come down on you.” He’d be so mad he’d chase me around and needless to say I wasn’t bored anymore.

Where’s the border? Where’re the lines that mark boundaries between self, family, community, world? All in flux, cycles in flux. All that appears constant melts into background. Empties with every breath. Figure- field moment. Every circle every cycle.

In the layers of skin, I do return. From the past I lived to come into the now, covering up pains with pleasures, stitching the skin, painting mediums in you, creating layers deep.

At some point you were left alone to decide who you are? Who you are family. It took me sixty years to find where this nappy hair came from.

It is called personalized medicine. With bipolar disorder it remains depersonalized medicine.

Parcels wrapped in seed.