Love for the Strings:
The Art & Performance of Hikari Kesho’s Shibari Photography
a visual essay by Mark McCawley
Hikari Kesho has always had a passion for the photography of bodies, particularly the female form, exploring what he called “body expression” when at the age of 18 he began his first serious and continuing explorations of photography by enrolling in a major photo club. Often his photographic research led him to interpret the body with the use of chains, ropes, even ivy, anything that could be used to “lock” the position of the subject in a desired position, to transform the subject “more charming, more beautiful graphically, yet certainly also the most erotic” to the eye.
Gibberish, Hallucinations, Paranoia,
and the Long Way Out of Town
by Jose Padua
I can’t remember the quick way out of town anymore, and while we were stuck in traffic on North Capitol Street this morning, we saw this man standing at the entrance to this building, which is listed as the address of the Ida Mae Campbell Wellness & Resource Center. From behind the man looked like he was perhaps a businessman or even a doctor, but as we waited in traffic he remained at the door, and after a moment I could see that he was staring at a sign above the doorknob. When he turned around briefly, I could see he had a totally blank expression on his face, the look of someone who is far beyond just being lost. Then he turned back around to stare at the sign.
The Geographical Rewriting of Memory
Listen to Wreck Travel Memory as you read
It all begins with some lit fuse, an old jingle for Palisades Amusement Park you’re still able to sing along with ["shows & dancing are free"], or the snap of a finger, the way she used to from the edge of the bed with a smirk, some glance of exposed warm skin holding the aroma of sun tan lotion, the sea lions in Central Park Zoo that remind you of Salinger – & reading Salinger on the 1979 F-Train & meeting Sylvina. I used to be a foot messenger & would pass through the zoo when it was rundown but free & I would talk to the animals between deliveries. [The old zoo serves as the final destination in BEER MYSTIC.] Or maybe its some vintage news report from the 1968 Chicago Riots, or an email from an old flame you came to NYC with from Ann Arbor who is wondering how you’re doing, or a sound – in my case, the sound bites here included, plus a few elusive bars from “Funk #49” by James Gang. Or is it Paloma taking photos of turtles in Central Park because she remembers my touching stories about my turtle “Spotty” when I was 10 & how the neighbors released him & I was heartbroken. “Was that what Spotty looked like?” she kept asking.
by Tim Beckett
She appeared on an old style woman’s bike with the heavy iron frame and the wide handlebars, her backpack so heavy she almost fell over as she came to a stop. I was drinking beer on Bill’s porch with Bill and a dozen other people and I watched her as she came up the stairs. She was striking, with high Indian cheekbones and olive skin and long brown hair she’d tied back in a ponytail with an Indian braid, and an athletic dancer’s figure which she’d wrapped in a ankle-length leather greatcoat. As she said hello in turn to everyone on the porch, I noticed that, unusually amongst Bill’s friends, she was French.
She’d noticed me as well, because she stopped right in front of me, taking me in with amazing diamond eyes. Up close, she looked familiar though that didn’t mean much: in the month I’d been back in Montreal, every street, face or overheard conversation – whether in French or English – contained some association with a set of vaguely remembered persons or memories. For this and other reasons, I didn’t like to go out much, but that afternoon was special: Bill and his wife Sarah were having a baby shower for their daughter Gisele, who had just turned one.
Sarah, just two years off heroin.
by Philip Quinn
I’d beg for a cup of coffee, a stale bun. The
merchants chased me from their doorsteps. I made
note of their thick accents.
I thought after the last war, I would make my way
as a painter. But my art fed me nothing.
Now I listen for the guns. Each day their thunder
comes closer. A dog when it is fed cyanide
straightens its legs out. Marriage — the last
desperate hope. I owed her that at least.
I always said my prayers like a good boy. Did the
honourable duty towards those that expected it.
Some had to die before me of course. Even the young
Do you know what it is like to hear your name
shouted out and to feel the love of thousands?
Occasionally I lifted my hand and smiled.UG
Philip Quinn lives in Toronto and online at www.philipquinn.ca.
Dis Location, Stories After the Flood (Gutter Press 2000)
The Double, a novel. (Gutter Press 2003)
The SubWay (BookThug 2008)
The Skeleton Dance, a novel (Anvil Press 2009)