Thursday 3 July 2014

Oystercatcher Pamphlets: Amy Cutler's Nostalgia Forest (2013) and Alan Baker's all this air and matter (2013)

I've read two fine pamphlets this week from Oystercatcher Press. Amy Cutler's Nostalgia Forest (2013) juxtaposes passages from Paul Ricoeur's Memory, History, Forgetting with illustrations from dendrochronology manuals (i.e. tree reading) and hence can't really be excerpted. Cutler's intelligent and playful combinations of words and images render the pamphlet an unusually engaging and gratifying experience. You can purchase it directly from the publisher by following this link.

The second Oystercatcher pamphlet I read and enjoyed was Alan Baker's all this air and matter (2013), interweaving dailiness and an array of larger concerns about language and living. Some of my favourite passages follow below, and you buy the pamphlet from Oystercatcher here

and we, this morning,
as if the world were a place of healing,
and touch the ultimate cognition


should it be sign of something more
when the square of sunlight on the hall floor
takes shape again at dawn?


           and certainty in abeyance


she will say that the sea
     rested on her shoulder
    and its surge was her heartbeat


woke to surfaces and the words
                      that make up the world


living, "the process of becoming alive"

meteorologically speaking
           occlusion and changeability


the pathways of sleep
   lead away from all that
              into the calm melancholy
      of morning:


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