Sunday, April 24, 2011

Mini-Review: A Brief Encyclopedia of Modern Magic by Michael Stewart

Cover of A Brief Encyclopedia of Modern Magic by Michael Stewart, published by Cupboard
She ordered this book a year ago; it came in the mail a year ago; she began to write a post about how splendid it was to come home and find it in her mailbox in its small envelope. Then, she never hit "publish". Instead, she read the little book that fit so well in her hand that she can't find it now. She carried it around with her, read passages aloud to people. Like this one:

Trick eggs. There are so many trick eggs. A partial list could include: eggs from which full grown pigeons emerge; hollow eggs with silks hidden inside; eggs so heavy two men would be needed to lift them; eggs so light they float an inch over the table; unbreakable eggs; eggs which can wobble and walk on their own; eggs which when broken scream out.

Then she would look up, and they would be smiling. Maybe they would laugh.

She would frown and reread to herself what she had read to them. But isn't it sad? she would say. Well, sort of--but it's humorous, it's also supposed to be funny, they would insist.

Oh. I think it's just tragic and beautiful.

--a Brief Encyclopedia of Modern Magic, Cupboard Pamphlet, 32 pages, $5.00

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Review of Nightmares: Hiroshima by John Hersey

Cover of Hiroshima by John HerseyShe had a nightmare that took place in San Marcos, TX, where she lived at the time. It was one of a series of nightmares in which sudden explosions occurred, huge fiery blasts that lit up and burned up everything--including her. In this particular nightmare, she was downtown, walking down the sidewalk along Hopkins Street. She was across from the courthouse. It was a blue sky day. Then everything exploded, and went orange and black.

Maybe that dream ended there, her thinking, Why can't I feel myself burning? And then the pain so intense it wasn't even pain. Or maybe the dream continued, or this was another nightmare in the series, after an explosion, and she's running down the sidewalk toward the river, and there are all these people jumping in, and she's trying to tell them not to, that jumping in water will only make their burning skin worse, and then the river is filled with death instead of the usual people floating down on their inner tubes--lazily, under the bridge, under the train trestle, gliding away where the water curves against the curving earth.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

seed toss, kick it over: new make-it book by w. craghead

Cover of Seed Toss, Kick It Over by W. Cragheadw. craghead w. craghead, the artist who turned her story "The Only Child" into an award-winning work, has a new make-it book: "seed toss, kick it over". The book is available and free oncraghead's website where readers can print out and fold the 12-page book into place.

"seed toss, kick it over" is a love letter out of craghead's signature style that collides the childlike with the somber-serious.

--To return (or turn) subject matters to the startling that, for one reason or another, had gone numb.

He's an artist to thank, she thinks.