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Karen Carpenter Sketch/The Counting of Exiled Bones

A little messy sketch of movement that is a sibling to, an extension of, something with a poem I wrote a few years back (below). I'm starting this piece from a place of tender curiosity around the dysmorphias we feel and the behaviors that we develop I think to initially give voice to these feelings of distance from self and then later yes simply to "cope". It was only after letting a playlist run on shuffle and moving with Anais Mitchell's "A Hymn for the Exiled" that I understood some part of what I've been trying to name, explore, etc is the feeling of exile from one's body and self. Ultimately, I'm looking towards the exiling of Karen Carpenter from her drumming as a tale of the exiling of womxn artists (I think at least), but I'm also and likely more curious about the intersections and overlapping of and conversations (so to speak) between exiles and dysmorphias. But for now, a messy movement sketch and poem (and an off-camera impromptu meow from Cleopatra)


This wine is too good for toast-drinking, my dear. You don't want to mix emotions up with a wine like that. You lose the taste. - The Sun Also Rises

That was the summer I compulsively

counted my ribs, marveling at their

inability to protect that spindly

mass of reckless valves and muscle,

let alone the rest of me from the

excesses of a hot, wired city.

It was the summer I realized my

heart is only as strong as my stomach,

which loses all brevity after

three glasses of champagne:

after which I dream of full armor,

something to protect my heart, my gut,

my ears from my own gluttony for

affection, bubbles, and music.

Staring at myself in bar bathrooms,

I would wash the city humidity from

my face, reapply lipstick, fix

my straps and bemoan

this soft, vulnerable middle -

what were we thinking arising,

opening our most delicate parts to

each other?


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