Wednesday, October 21, 2015


Joseph Mallord William Turner, excerpt
from "River Scene, with Carpenters at Work
Mending a Sluice," The Tate

You’d need to make an appointment to sit
with the sketch Turner made of carpenters
mending a sluice (faint tangles of graphite
laid on paper that still exhales vanillin and
lignin and lead)—but you can look online,
dream about locks, and flow, and the now-
unseen green of the countryside that day
he made it. We’re still in drought here, but
I can feel the monsoon coming. The sluice
gates are open—I can see the acequias, the
wells, the aquifers at last are starting to fill.

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