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Photo: Bob Perelman
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… sound of street sweeper accompanying sight of school bus traveling down Ninth Avenue.
Woman waiting, man entering right; woman exiting left.
Brecht: men rowing, side-by-side.
Man reading on bench removes himself to next bench, looks back at bench as if to explain that the sun, not my presence, caused his move.
Or that I had wanted to compare Barrett Watten’s “Three” with Brecht’s “Conversations Rowing” (trans. Edwin Morgan) but had not the time to do so.
Or that non-identity offers an alternative to the reciprocity with which Brecht’s “Conversations Rowing” endows a type.
What is China?
If (Watten’s) “Footnote to Tibet” is structuralist, “China” reserves a sociolect. Perelman’s
“China’s” China is orientalist even to itself, in paper stock and typeface that make albums arcades of self-presentation.
Not, non-, un-being, render states incommensurable.
China stares at a wall.
American ending: Elderly woman wheeling shopping cart sits down.
She wears sunglasses, the frames of which construct 2-0-0-9.
… sits down, gets up, walks away.
Marjorie Welish is the author of Isle of the Signatories (Coffee House Press, 2008). Her most recent work is Oaths? Questions? (Granary Books, 2009): a limited-edition constructed book with James Siena — both authors doing art and text. Of the Diagram: The Work of Marjorie Welish (Slought Foundation, 2003) is a book from a conference http://slought.org/content/11008/ that includes Bob Perelman’s interview with Marjorie Welish.