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Nohe & Sellman – August 2019

Jane Sellman and Timothy Nohe traded art and words. Timothy shared this untitled image with Jane:

In response, Jane wrote this poem:

A Stitch in Time

Trussed like a holiday turkey
basted and baked before the crime
no say in the weight or gauge of the thread
no option to opine on the color.
one must be pliant
and quiet.

Stuffed with recipes
shopping lists
wedding contracts
protection orders
scripture that lays out the rules,
which often change to
befit the situation.

Embroidered with dress codes
damning words and phrases
A letter “A”
A notice of ownership.

Knitted into a corner
sentenced to the stocks
             condemned to laces, bodices, bustles, brassieres,
             titles, chastity belts, hemlines, necklines, panty hose, bikinis,
             habits, burkas, saris, jumpers,
             corsets, garter belts

Hobbled by cobblers
How many victims would have escaped had they not been
wearing heels.

Multiply skeins participate
They keep us busy hemming and hawing
picking up stitches or unraveling yarn

We are worsted for wear but
We are strong from the backstitching of our antecedents
We always remember to
Keep eyes on the bias.

* * * * *

Jane shared this poem with Timothy:

All Winter

All winter you went to bed early drugging yourself on War and Peace.
News and Leno in your ears, you wrapped yourself in the pink and yellow comforter.
It was on sale, only thirty and change.
So excited when you returned to work, you almost missed the snickers —
we spend that on lunch, their eyes remarked.
But in its clear plastic package, it received the approval of your fellow bus passengers.

All winter you went to bed early, as you sought the happy mix of The Kite Runner and Ed McBain, laced with crosswords and short story collections.
Fall Out Boy in your head,
Twinings Earl Grey brewed in hot tap
Waiting for the ice to melt and drop away, revealing pale green-blue buds – the reluctant
tops of crocuses and the hearts of the gainfully employed.

Listening to a Baltimore breeze blow dry snow against the finally replaced windows,
you winter in Eastern Europe with The Historian and consider a move to Jersey
to hunt miscreants with Janet Evanovich.
Propped up on pillows eagerly awaiting the new installment, the continued of “to be continued,” the next chapter….

The winter quiet so unnatural on downtown streets
Not even a night shouter ventures out
That Monday you wake to a “New Document” landscape.
So deep, not even the sound of cars slushing by.
You wrap yourself in thirty dollars of comfort, pour coffee and lace it with respite
Taking another try at Russian names and keeping track of too many characters
Turning pages in tragic abandon, hoping for a happy ending.
Watching years fall lightly from the sky and form dense drifts in
front of my door.

In response, Timothy made this series of images titled “7 Sams” (click to enlarge):


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