The pattern light makes on a wall through laced curtains —
You said the dappled light made it hard to see the potholes in the road, and it’s true. That golden light laces everything we see with magic, wonder, the safety of our little ship sailing past town on town of low-slung buildings, some shuttered, some alive with flags in the windows, kids on pink bikes, a dog panting in the dusty shade. Landscapes laced with awe in that streaky light.
How much do we want the context of ownership? How much do we need it? How much can we resist it without the risk of erasing pain, loss, love, longevity? The photos in the brochure show the wood-turned-quartz exactly where it was 100 years ago. But how have the canyon views changed, you ask? We come laced with our own assumptions, and some are unkind. What, exactly, is wrong with patriotism (we push ourselves), with wanting to be proud and connected to a vague ancestry (to look with love)? We all want to be held. We all want to touch.
“Don’t take anything,” the ranger says at the gate.
“Do what you want, but remember what it could have been used for… funerals, black magic,” says B.
We are always tainted by our worldviews; what we do is laced in knowledge we’ve chosen to remember. A mantilla, affecting but not obscuring the view. A windshield — transparent obstacle; sometimes it’s hard to remember how much we aren’t seeing, when the landscapes are so wide.
At the highest point, you’re given the impression of seeing everything at once. We only have two eyes each. How much could we possibly be expected to catch? We’re drugged by adventure, by mythology. Is this a third eye, or another lace curtain? It’s how light gets dimension, passing through. We’re also passing through, catching B-roll through a window, rolling by. Everything to come will be laced with the Southwest, all tied up in red rocks and dry skin. It would all be different in different shoes. We’ve laced up and decided our fate already. We always do.
It was all laced up with laxatives and amphetamines and lace. LACED up in desire and trauma and pity. That’s the extent. The long and short. The stitching – the quality of the thread holding the thing together makes the difference. Laced up in lace, or yarn, or cord.
Laced up in between the tensions that tie hopping from one place to another. The tenuous thread between the white retirees in the town 30 minutes to the Mexican border, and the reservation land sick of people passing through and gawking, and the queer farm sanctuary you pass through 2 cow gates and 3 barking dogs to get to.
The freeways and roads, paved, unkempt, and gravel lace between these places. Connecting that which might want nothing to do with the other. We were told by laminated paper not to tromp down new paths – stick to the pre-existing lacing. Respect the tirade of plants that exist where they are.
This metaphor is lame. Because it doesn’t make sense – it doesn’t map a clean mythology for me. A desired mythology. I’m thinking about myths that are old and new. Are new ones aggressive? Can the old and new exist in tandem – what is the lacing between them? Creating that lacing feels like a surgery without laughing gas
We are here on a space that is both sanctuary and spiritual, permissive and authoritative. Could I make that a clunky metaphor for the US? Is this impulse to be back on the land, creating new politics, new spiritualities, new structures, a direct descendent of the non-native American mythology? Striking out as the only rule. Still block lettered. Still sans serif. But maybe a little dirt underneath. Or coffee. Yeah, coffee. To fuel us forward to pave new paths. To create new universes. I would like more coffee.