The Road That Must Be Travelled

A while ago, when I was first working on this invocation, my idea of what it was about was wrong, or at least incomplete. I had to wait. Time has always been a crucial element in my work. I had to give the universe time to filter through me, change me, and change what I was making. With this piece, it was not until I had a conversation with my sister Susan that I realized its final shape, when she spoke of a dark road.

© 2018 lcmt

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Inanna at the Door

Spring arrived yesterday morning when the goddess Inanna knocked on my front door. Inanna chose to appear as a short Mexican-American woman, approximately 80 years old, attired in brightly-colored fleecewear. After she invited me to step out onto the sun-warmed bricks of my front walk, the goddess informed me that the temperature would reach 70 degrees Fahrenheit, and suggested that I might enjoy drinking my morning coffee sitting on my stoop, which is the little patch of brick and cement in front of my house. The chairs did indeed look inviting, clustered with potted plants against the stucco wall beneath my kitchen window, with everything bathed in bright sunlight. Inanna then scolded me for neglecting my plants. (My plants are all tough cactus and succulents–neglect is an essential strategy of my horticultural regimen.) To appease her, I gave her a handsome specimen for her own collection, a plant she had singled out for her particular attention. The plant had been given to me, and I was mostly ignoring it, so using it to curry favor with a divine entity seemed a judicious thing to do.

After Inanna left (she lives next door), I dusted off my chairs, freshened my coffee, and sat in the sun on my stoop/patio/porch-like-thing-in-front-of-my-house. On the street, an occasional car rumbled by. Birds chattered at each other, different birds with different voices, a jay scolded, a mocking bird practiced his scales, an unseen crow called in the distance. I closed my eyes so that I could turn my face to the sun and bask. I was amazed to see that the colors inside my eyelids were the same orange, red and magenta colors I had used for my invocation “Inanna Ascendant”.

When I opened my eyes, I noticed that green, supple weeds had sprung up instantly in the cracks in the cement, while my eyes had been closed.

The temperature reached 72.

Inanna Ascendant


Dreaming of the vernal equinox.

The furnace in my house is old, and last year it quit half-way through the winter. Since I live in a climate where the winters are not harsh, and I could not afford to pay a repair guy to come out and just look at my furnace, I bundled up in extra layers and shivered through the remainder of the winter. It was a small commonplace adventure, I enjoyed it, and I liked the money I saved.

I lived through the warmer seasons with a cold furnace gathering dust, and as the nights grew longer again, I resolved to make it through this entire winter season without trying to repair the furnace. By the middle of February, spring has usually arrived in this part of California. Not this year. February was a month of freezing nights, frosty mornings, and dry days of cold blue skies.

© 2018 lin tarczynski

Black and White


Lots of great stuff in Issue 9 of Brave New Word, including my series of short abstract comics, “Meanwhile…”

I went to a used book sale on Friday, and one of my more expensive finds (still a bargain at $5) was a battered library discard, a book about the history of artists books. It is a representation of the 1994-1995 exhibition, A Century of Artists Books, from the Museum of Modern Art, New York. The book is a nice bit of thrift sale treasure, but I can only get a glimpse of a cover, or a couple of pages, from each featured book. Among them, I discovered Quatre Histoires de blance et noire by František (Frank) Kupka.

Luckily for me, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco has online images of the 26 woodcuts from Quatre Histoires at their site. I stole a few to put up here.







Ancient Quincuncial Networks


Jainne Lummrey was a postgraduate student at Newcastle University, studying the history and literature of early modern Britain, when she discovered Geranium Lake Properties in the British comic magazine Viz. (GLP appeared irregularly in Viz from 1987 to 1991, according to a deal with John Brown that was independent from Yost’s agreements with his other comics syndication services.) Jainne wrote to Yost after the “Ancient Quincuncial Networks” panel was published in May 1990. Thus began an ardent correspondence that lasted for nine years, until Jainne Lummrey’s death in 1999. Yost last letter arrived at Jainne’s London address two days after the police discovered her body. The letter was sent from New Zealand, postmarked the day before Yost disappeared after boarding a ferry from Auckland to Rangitoto Island.


Cover for the first edition of Urn Burial, The Garden of Cyrus by Thomas Browne: A New Interpretation by Jainne Lummrey, 1997, Trace Mark Press.

© 2018 lcmt

A Tale of Congenial Confusion Between Bronze, Iron, Calico and Velveteen



No-one noticed that this story was unfinished until five years later, when Yost published “The Conclusion To A Tale of Congenial Confusion Between Bronze, Iron, Calico and Velveteen”.

© 2018 lcmt

Begriffsschrift


I have been caught somewhere between the flu and a querulous reluctance to begin the new year, so here we are, 23 days into January, catching up with the universe according to Geranium Lake Properties.

Beriwa Tholdry is one of the Four Twilight Kingdoms in Geranium Lake Properties. It has been almost universally accepted among fans of GLP that the names of the Twilight Kingdoms are anagrams of friends or relatives of Wm. Yost, who had his own rules for making the anagrams he used in GLP comics. Most of the rules he kept secret, I know only two of them. He never used the letter “p” except under special circumstances, and he always made four letter changes. Four was a number of extraordinary significance for Yost.

One of my friends over at Ello, comandantechispas, a true master of anagrams, came up with a notable solution to the “Beriwa Tholdry” anagram: “writable hydro”. Writable water as a concept seems to me an entirely suitable (and perhaps even essential) element in the GLP universe.

© 2018 lcmt