Category Archives: global warming

You might not know

You might not know how much of my psyche is wrapped up with wondering what it’s like to become an adult right now, particularly as a man.

I don’t realize the depth of this preoccupation myself until I start making collages.

Example: the SoulCollage card above. There are LOTS of examples.

For obvious reasons, climate emergency comes up. It is really hard to imagine 15 years out.

I glued a lot of paper into the book after dinner tonight, slitting compositions in half or thirds to fit on the page where need be. This will allow me to use remnants to create unifying repetitions.

Below is another one of my slide shows. I don’t know why this satisfies me so much. I don’t expect it to satisfy you. It’s worth noting that this process is NOTHING like working with cloth. I read Grace’s post just now where she draws parallels between cloth and paper and they are there for the finding. This is not that.

For info on this collage project see Acey’s blog sparklinglotusink

For more SoulCollage cards of mine, go to Flickr on sidebar and open the SoulCollage album. Or, track the ‘SoulCollage’ and ‘collage’ tags here on the blog.

Australia burning

SoulCollage card made years ago

New South Wales firefighter, Greg Mullins: “I’ve been fighting fires for 47 years and I’ve never seen anything like it. But, we’ve known it’s coming for 20 years.”

“It’s climate change, it’s worldwide, and people need to sit up and take notice.” (WBUR interview)

UPDATE: I removed the two attempts at fire maps because they’re not accurate. Mo tells me the fires are burning in “NSW, Victoria, South Australia and they were burning earlier in Queensland and Western Australia.

As Acey noted in a comment to yesterday’s post, one of the beauties of the collage process is that it brings heartbreak out of the shadows. Oh, look! To view pain in the stark terms that images allow is always powerful and sometimes healing.

Two days ago, I was wrapped up in the catastrophic missteps of our government in Iraq (still am). Not really thinking about Australia at all. And then I found this woman and her horse. She was in a stack of magazine pullouts waiting for this moment.

Of course the animal reminded me of the horse on the beach from yesterday’s post. Look at her! A warrior, for certain! I would trust her with a beloved animal. With environmental policy. With anti-corruption efforts.

The stylish woman in the upper left hand corner, on the other hand, has rendered herself frivolous by looking away.

Every once in a while, type shows up in a collage that adds import. For the word, “things” to appear next to a materialistic fashionista while the world burns around her makes perfect sense. We wonder: what will happen to HER horse?

Please consider making a donation to help orphaned and injured animals. Here’s a link for cash donations.

Even though postage to Australia is so astronomical, I know some of you will be moved to make a thing or two. For that reason, I’m offering to mail a couple of boxes to Australia if people want to make nests, mitts, or wraps and ship them to me in Massachusetts. I’m going to refer people to the FB group instead. American shipping hubs have been established.

The first picture below shows what’s needed. If you’re on Facebook, you can join Animal Rescue Craft Guild. They have a tab, “FILES,” where patterns are listed.

Here’s a link to a crochet pattern for nests.

For another post:

UPDATE: thru the FB group, I may have found someone who can offer drastically reduced postage! I’ll keep you posted — so to speak 🙂 Photo below from that FB group. No attribution listed.

Fragile

Can I just say, yesterday I got spooked. It wasn’t just the fear of falling on black ice, it was also the hearings with all that gaslighting, inverting of sense and fact. How the lying seems to work. By now, too, I know that I always feel terrible after trump has been abroad. The embarrassment and the visible costs of his corrupt incompetence are harsh to note.

How fragile it all seems! I know people say it all the time, but yesterday I felt it in my body. How we might not make it. As a republic or a planet.

Prompt after writing prompt produces articulations of rage and despair about climate deniers and about the damage itself. After teaching Tuesday’s class (on Zoom because of the snow emergency), I thought, why does this keep coming up? Then yesterday: why doesn’t it come up more?

In fact, how can we talk about anything else?

Tomorrow there’s a climate strike in Copley Square. I’m not planning to go. It’s been a long week with K in China and back to back snowstorms. But I laud the young people skipping school to protest — getting their priorities right.

The first thing I listened to this morning was the inspiring, intelligent, beautiful Naomi Klein. She and Rebecca Solnit keep trying to remind us that climate denial is violence. Abuse. Part of a pattern of corporate greed.

It’s worth the six minute listen.

PS A few weeks ago, I read Maddow’s book about ‘the world’s most destructive industry on earth’ — the fossil fuel industry. Amazing how much is about Russia.

Offspring: a poem, a lament

Speaking of offspring, here’s a lament written during the summer writing retreat.* I can’t remember what the prompt was — maybe something about emptying your mind?


Golden rod tug slightly in a breeze. Higher up, the rustle of maples. And everywhere: insects. Bees and flies and stinging pests. How sweet it’d be to merely lament the season coming to a close and not the earth herself melting, collapsing, churning, with the Ring of Fire activating quakes up and down the coasts on either side of the Pacific. Which one will open up under Brentwood, Pasadena, Korea Town, and Studio City and gobble up great edifices of society not to mention, people: Brother, Son? I could never have been the mother who said, ‘No. Do not go.’ And even if I had been, he’d not have listened which is how it should be, but still — a bigger worry added to the usual worries.

And then there’s the plains of Nebraska, the river banks along the Mississippi, the lower reaches of Missouri — should so much land be under water?

And how can the potential destruction of, say, one American Western city compare to all of Greenland’s ice melting, Paris and London frying under a merciless sun? Or colony collapse, the bees giving up the ghost, along with whole caveloads of bats, unable to fight the poisonous fight any longer, tongues and nails, slab and tourniquet. What place, then after?

When we look at the data, we also look away, preferring to note how a grasshopper landing not five feet away says something about summer ending and the memory of other summers ending — times when bikes, hoses, pools, bare feet were the signifiers. Our poor brood when little watched nature show after nature show offering up news of habitat decline and species extinction and people wonder why millennials are anxious?

We wonder why the young refuse heirlooms of any kind, but especially have no interest in the Rosenthal china, the Royal Doulton, the Strawberry Wedgewood. ‘Will we have a home or air?’ they wonder — the inability to afford the former a trifling but inescapable concern compared to the latter.

‘We have ten years,’ they keep saying, trying and failing to sound the alarm. ‘Ten years’ means something different to the young than it does to my aging ears. Gone are the days when insects present as cute and annoying pests. Not when closer scrutiny might reveal how numbered their days are. How connected they are to everything else.

Even if we all rowed in the same direction, what a monumental challenge! But with lies the prevalent currency and corporations granted all ascendancy, we first have to clean house and by then — I’m sorry, the thought is there — mightn’t it be too late?

How many monarchs migrated to the milkweeds, those perennials standing proud and erect, proper in their heliotropic course, casting lozenge-shaped shadows, offering praise to sun and nourishment to caterpillars? How many? Less than last year? A tenth of the year before?

It’s easy to shrug at the extinction of some two-toed sloth or a miniature lizard with nocturnal habits literally never seeing the light of day, but what about ALL of the passerines? Polar bears and reindeer? What about us? If we’d cared more about the two-toed sloth all those years ago, would we be better situated today — able to enter the “Wild Kingdom” programming, sponsored by Mutual of Omaha and hosted by some hokey and corny know-nothing, instead of learning about floating islands of plastic the size of Delaware and about Colorado burning for half a season?

 

* It turns out that the response to the prompt mentioned yesterday became a chapter in the book (working title: •Blood and Indigo•). That means I’m precluded from ‘publishing’ here (seriously, with 100 hits a day?) What would happen if I ‘published’ it, left it up for ten days, and then tagged it private? SShhh

Sharon Olds poem, published in Atlantic Magazine.

Choose color. Eat. Laugh.

It’s amazing what a dampening effect weather and disappointing news can have. Parts of Colorado got nine inches of snow! Don McGahn didn’t show up to testify and he’s not in jail!

It doesn’t help to be reading a book about a hapless, middle-aged failure whose failures would rank as astounding successes for me. K pshaws (he’s a champ), but still.

(Why continue reading it, you ask? Because it’s incredibly well-written and I want to know what happens).

A delicious homemade broth with ramen was a definite perk last night. We could walk there too, which was nice.

Another high point: a trip to a goodwill in a posh part of Denver where I scored some really good ‘cutters.’ The best one — a garment made out of African batik.

It’s a maxi skirt, so it’s a decent bit of yardage.

Also, I’m a sucker for stripes, so this beautiful cotton skirt grabbed my eye.

I photographed it on a quilt made for D (13 years ago?) to show the consistency of palette.

What colors draw you in, again and again? I’ve studiously tried to move toward a less saturated color wheel for years and not managed it. Tells you something.

This quilt represents probably as much success as I’ll get with choosing more subdued colors. It’s almost finished, PS.

This dress, while a 100% polyester, has just the kind of patterning that I love. Also, because it’s nearly sheer, it can easily be stitched on top of other fabrics. And check out the buttons!

So, what to do while Rome burns? Have a decent meal and indulge in colors that please you. Is that what I’m saying?

Maybe.

Guffawing over at twitter has its place, too.

Something like normal

Forty five degrees but not raining — we’ll take it! Looks like the down vests might be staying out until Memorial Day this year.

House is settling down some. I’ve emptied four more boxes from the garage and also neatened our sitting room so that it’s slightly more liveable, even with piles and crates of my sister’s things.

It would be MORE back to normal today if we weren’t off to Colorado this weekend. Son #2 will be working most of the visit which is one of those bad things/good things but mostly good thing because it means he has a full time job. This visit, for the novelty of it, we’re staying in Denver instead of Boulder.

I’ll leave you with more pictures from the sister clip files, below. All these images were in a plastic pack together.

The handsome man in the tan suit might be Bryan Ferry (my sister and I saw Roxy Music together once), but I’m not sure.

What’s in YOUR clip file?

A series — global warming

This Global Warming quilt is probably four feet long and exhibits the most surface work of all of them.

Visual vocabulary: Orange concentric circles for heat; bamboo to suggest nonnative invasive species taking advantage of climate change; lots of spirals for tornadoes; ferns and palms to hint at enlarged tropics; smokestack shapes “found” in cut up clothing to represent the source of carbon gasses; stripes for both rain and radiating heat.

I have a total of eight finished quilts in the series. There are at least two more unfinished pieced tops — one is flapping on the line outside right now (what a cold windy day it’s been here!) and the other is in the studio, I think.

These last shots are of the back of the four footer.

PS I unexpectedly sold two small quilts off of my FB business page yesterday. How nice is that?