THE CLAW Has Landed

It was a hot 1500 miles to Houston, Texas, but THE CLAW endures and so does its driver. As always, I learned a few things along the way. First, should you find yourself staying in Bloomington, Indiana with a composer you met two years ago at VCCA, you might find collections of cracked pint glasses around his apartment. Later, this will make sense when you learn that unusable dishes are used to record the sound of glass breaking against different surfaces.
Second, should you find yourself in the company of a great poet-teacher, you could re-route your trip away from Fayetteville (where she thought she’d be when you arrived) to Little Rock, where she actually ended up. You might also learn a great, wise lesson about your writing life, to be discussed in a future post.
Third, should you find yourself without air conditioning as you drive deep, deep into the bowels of your country, you will have to endure not only puddles of your own sweat, but admonitions from all you encounter en route to Texas: “Do you have a cooler for ice cubes and a wet rag to throw over your head while you drive?” “You’re going to be hating life.” “You’re kidding right? Right? Nobody drives without AC in that kind of heat.” “Just become nocturnal, that’s the only way you’re going to survive this.”
But survive it I did. Howard, the painter I’ll be working with for the next 25 days, has kindly and generously been preparing his warehouse studio apartment for my arrival. We met 9 months ago as Fellows at the Jentel Foundation. The fourth thing I learned on this trip—as experienced with all 3 stops—was the power of friendship and connections through art. These friendships endure, and I wouldn’t have had such a rich journey without them.
Onward, to this home brew residency where 1 painter + 1 writer + 1 warehouse + 25 days = THE WAREHOUSE SESSIONS.

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