Recommended listening: Alpine by Linying included in her Paris 12 EP
One of my habits as a poet is to attribute a colour to a collection, or a series of writing. This is an intuitive method I’ve used for a really long time to help me make editorial and syntactical decisions when I put a poem together.
I’ve also talked about how photographing things is a method of notetaking for me. As a poet whose primary content is the “scape”, source material comes in all shapes and forms, collected in the environments and spaces I inhabit and move through.
This year I am introducing outfit posts in the form of the #OOTC (outfit of the city).
All cities are temperamental and seasonal, they change and adopt different postures over the course of the year in rhythm and habit.
These landscapes for me are filled with certain kinds of colours and moods I try to remember, and reconstruct for different purposes when I write.
I’ll be compiling a photo set every month with personal portraits styled after the city’s outfits. These images aren’t amazing photographs, nor are they meant to be. Instead, they are seeds of little poems full of affective energy and dynamic moods. I am perhaps trying to dig into what it means for me to write the city – a consistent fixation in my poetry.
January is a mottled shade of grey and pink that everybody will immediately recognize. It is a month full of withheld light, unclear skies and something like out-of-focus eyes. It has been a month of lethargy for some, of hopelessness and muffled frustration for so many others. I have felt burdened and fatigued, angry and helpless. I have been afraid.
This January also feels particularly solitary, full of quiet walks to and from places. Some days this solitude is peaceful; other days, it is lonely.
My January has been this kind of month, and the deep quiet I am tapping into within me is a greying magenta – the shade of the evening sky against the ROM at 6PM as I am walking to my next event, to my next destination.
It is a reminder that the shortest day of the year is over, and maybe there is something pushing back against the darkness – something about to pierce into light.