Blacksmith Livestream

Lucas and Carolyn reflect a bit on all of the amazing developments that the listeners and participants of EB helped make happen in 2018 before using Session 38: Blacksmith for this livestream. Lucas writes about the sometimes grueling sacrifices that a parent must make for their children. Carolyn writes about classification and how to better understand the natural world that we live in. It’s a good time!

Lucas’s result from 12.30.18 livestream:

He poured the small stones into the glass jar. It was nearly full. The weight of it had been growing heavier over the past two hours, but the chanters demanded that the rite be carried out fully. Children laughed as they skipped along the beach, throwing small sticks at the gulls and kicking at knee-high waves. His brow was dripping with sweat, his eyes stung from the wind, salt, and sand. The jar slipped in his hand as his muscles cramped. He knelt and cradled it near the core of his body. At one time, he might have asked himself, “Does this matter?”

He hadn’t eaten for two days. Long, white blisters, flecked with blood lined his feet. He had sustained a gash on his shin from slipping on the algae-covered rocks–it had almost cost him the jar. It had almost smashed upon the rocks. The children sitting in the grass above the dunes laughing. But he had caught it.

There were times that he felt like he was flying as he walked upon the beach, holding the jar, waiting for the stones to be loaded within. His stomach felt as if it dissolved or perhaps slip down his leg and out the tips of his toes, relieving him of the added weight and trouble of eating. In the beginning, when the ceremony began, he remembered wondering how a gull would taste if he would strike it with a jagged rock, smash its beak, and roast it on a spit. He had supposed then that it might taste like chicken, or perhaps a tame fish, but now, he had forgotten what any of that tasted like, or why it even mattered in the first place.

A young girl, perhaps five years old, placed her hand on the lip of the jar. He looked down at her delicate fingers grasping at the smooth glass and was struck by how extraordinarily small and articulate they were. It took him a moment to realize what she was doing–that the stones that were appearing in her palms and being flung out into the sea, had come from his ceremonial jar. She laughed and marveled.

He sat as she pulled more of the stones from the jar and threw them into the water. Her eyes sparked green and blue. She jumped and splashed like the happy gulls. Before he knew it, half of the jar was gone.

Carolyn’s result from 12.30.18 livestream:

Rustling means that among the marbles,
something in the jar is alive, to be counted,
slippery among the interstitial of the spheres.
Can it be seen? Does it matter?
(the thing itself and whether it can be seen)

The pulse quickens, the quick of the nail
at the edge of life reaching under the lid,
uncertain of its expectations. So then—
the same question--does it matter to me?

Does it matter at all? If I know
how to open the jar, should I?
Those internal conditions change
by that conditional. The shift of it. The twist.

Is this too serious?
Maybe it isn’t so dire, this living,
that living thing, but even so,
how would I know? Can’t know its song
unless it sings it. Cant know if it sings.

Does knowing such things matter?
(the thing itself and whether it sings)
Is the buzz of curiosity worth the cause?
The effect? The consequence.

Is consequence the opposite of sequence,
the thunder echoed back from the burst,
the result possibly an insult?
Intention passed off as the precursor
to the tension it makes,
what it precipitates, what is saturated
in that flooded jar.

-Carolyn Decker 12.30.18
using EB Session 38: Blacksmith