hazelton

Love Poem for What It Is

There’s nothing in the world that loves you
more than the space you already take up.
There’s nothing in the world that won’t
forget you faster than you forgot
the last person that stepped out from your life.
When the cat reaches up
one needled paw to drag down a book
from your desk, then another,
that’s not love—that’s dominance.
When you reach up your hand and try to wheedle
someone else’s to hold it, that’s love
dominating you. There’s no word for loving more
than you should, just the feeling of excess,
as if your tongue burst in a rash of red sequins,
as if everyone can see your stutter in the air,
staccato love you, love you, and nothing in the world
standing in that space to receive it.

Rebecca Hazelton

from The Southeast Review

Thanks to fluttering-slips.

There’s nothing in the world that loves you
more than the space you already take up.
There’s nothing in the world that won’t
forget you faster than you forgot
the last person that stepped out from your life.
When the cat reaches up
one needled paw to drag down a book
from your desk, then another,
that’s not love—that’s dominance.
When you reach up your hand and try to wheedle
someone else’s to hold it, that’s love
dominating you. There’s no word for loving more
than you should, just the feeling of excess,
as if your tongue burst in a rash of red sequins,
as if everyone can see your stutter in the air,
staccato love you, love you, and nothing in the world
standing in that space to receive it.
—  Rebecca Hazelton, “Love Poem for What It Is”
I want to spend a lot but not all of my years with you.
We’ll talk about kids
                              but make plans to travel.
I will remember your eyes
                              as green when they were gray.
Our dogs will be named For Now and Mostly.
               Sex will be good but next door’s will sound better.

There will be small things.
I will pick up your damp towel from the bed,
                                                            and then I won’t.
I won’t be as hot as I was
                               when I wasn’t yours
and your hairline now so
               untrustworthy.
When we pull up alongside a cattle car
                               and hear the frightened lows,
                               I will silently judge you
                               for not immediately renouncing meat.
You will bring me wine
                               and notice how much I drink.

                                               The garden you plant and I plant
                               is tunneled through by voles,
                                                               the vowels
                                                               we speak aren’t vows,
                 but there’s something
                               holding me here, for now,
                 like your eyes, which I suppose
                                                               are brown, after all.
—  Hazelton, Rebecca. “You Are the Penultimate Love of My Life.”
5

Paul Hazelton’s Dust Sculptures

For most, dust is a non-object, a collection of life’s leftovers: dirt, hair, pollen, fibres all collecting on surfaces and in corners as time does its work. Dust’s physical presence then also comes to carry many meanings. Socially, it is often associated with carelessness, neglect, and poor housekeeping; symbolically, it recalls loss, mystery, memory, death . British artist Paul Hazelton explores these meanings by giving dust new sculptural forms, turning what was once a mere marker of the old and forgotten into a precious object all its own.

For Hazelton, this process of creating something out of nothing poses obvious existential questions. He writes of his skeletal work Being and Nothingness (2007) that it “exists as a result of something that was forced into being. That is what I do – if it doesn’t exist I will make it exist. For Sartre, what defines us is our undefined non-determined nature. If this is true, then our awareness of what we are not forces us to invent something from the nothingness of our being.”

Hazelton’s works delicately illustrates a close relationship between decay and creation with a medium that resists conventions of contemporary art display. While many museums and galleries work diligently to shield their treasures from mortality that dust’s presence implies, Hazelton looks to dust itself as meaningful sculptural material, infused with symbolic power.

See more of Hazelton’s projects at his website here

- Erin Saunders