Wall texts and Lightjet photographs mounted on aluminium: texts each 50 x 60cm; photographs each 100 x 240cm: Edition of 5
Artist’s book: full colour: 48 pp: London, Juice Publishing: Edition of 50
‘I think I could turn and live with human beings…’
A ‘halcyon’ is a mythical bird, often identified as a kingfisher, said to calm the wind and waves from its floating nest. These pictures show the viewpoint of a female kingfisher as she searches for nesting sites along the length of London’s Regents Canal. Each is preceded by a poem capturing the bird’s observations on her quest and her meditations on the meaning of home. Conceived of in part as a riposte to the infamous Molly Bloom soliloquy from James Joyce’s Ulysses, this voice is at once ecstatic, rational, baleful, cautious, wistful, sensuous and hopeful.
She may have left behind a rising cloud of
unpaid debts, e-mails unsent,
no words or signs to friends that might have meant
she was tired of work or was falling in love.
Urban ghoul merchants can fill the vacuum
of her disappearance with the worst of
rape, dismemberment, tabloid curses of
imagined foeti in a sunken womb.
But if my ‘last sighting’ of her can claim
something of truth, I bet right now
she’s out there somewhere and always knew how
seamless it would feel: new number; new name.
Beyond all this, we should be clinging
to the hope she’s happy somewhere: peaceful; singing.