At Heart

Writer’s Trigger:

“Father’s Old Blue Cardigan” by Anne Carson is one of my favorite poems. I give you just three lines which are particularly evocative for me. Notice the repetition of words, the parallelism, and the movement from the cardigan, to the speaker, to the deceased father. Note the circular nature of the continuity.

“Now it hangs on the back of the kitchen chair / where I always sit, as it did / on the back of the kitchen chair where he always sat.”

  • Think of an appliance, tool, piece of clothing, or a family heirloom that has a strong connection to a particular person. Using Anne Carson’s poem as a model, follow her lead and begin a poem or piece of prose. Attempt to circle round the item, the speaker, and the owner of the object.



Denver International Airport is more than an airport: it is a work of art itself- the white, soaring, canvas peaks of the main terminal replicating the snow-covered Rocky Mountains to the west. The permanent art within the building is wonderful, but the changing exhibits by Colorado artists are also noteworthy.

Passing through the DIA this week, I stopped to admire the work of Emma Hardy: Her life-like sculptures (based on her neighbors in Jamestown, CO, population 260) are made entirely of wrapping paper and paper packaging tape. The temporary installation consists of a central tree (embedded with both true-to-life and distortion mirrors) and five, widely dispersed people.

The physical distance between the people and their self-absorption lead you to consider their isolation from one another and from the viewer too. Moving closer to each sculpture, you can hear each sculpture’s singular heartbeat. If you stand next to the tree, you hear the five united heartbeats beating (in the artist’s words) “as a representation of our collective consciousness.”

The distortion mirrors underscore Hardy’s theme. What you see is not necessarily what you get.

Looking about an airport you see different races and cultures racing in isolation to destinations unknown. But in reality, our hearts beat as one.

About timeout2

I have lived 100 lives. I write essays, short stories, poetry, grocery lists and notes to myself. If I am ever lost, look for a paper trail, but be careful not to trip over any books that lie scattered here and there. I am a reader. I am a reader in awe of writers. When I don't live in Westcliffe, Colorado, I live in London where I am a long-time member of Word-for-Word - Crouch End.
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2 Responses to At Heart

  1. Val Wolking says:

    Hey Doris,

    Hope all is well with you. Emma Hardy’s art is reminiscent of my favorite, Norman Rockwell!! Too bad I will not be going to DIA any time soon!!


  2. timeout2 says:

    Dear Val, How nice to hear from you! To my dying day I will never forget the pleasure of catching you and “the boys” in Nettlebed, U.K. And you are right! Emma Hardy’s sculptures do have a Norman Rockwell quality. I hadn’t made the comparison, but now you mention it… I really like her work – very straight-forward with a depth you wouldn’t expect when the medium is paper. Amazing. Best wishes, Doris

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