Blue Moon Firing

Posted on August 6, 2015 in anagama, Uncategorized | No Comments

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We started the fire right after the blue moon, and in keeping with the vow that I continually break, of not saying anything if I don’t have anything nice to say, I won’t go into great detail as to the intense level of disorganization and ridiculousness that once again punctuated and, well, defined, in many ways, the launch of this firing.  Too many times I have said *never like this, again.  Never again*, only to capitulate when the deadline looms, and the kiln has to be packed, and I discover once more that the only welding gloves we have are desiccated, shrunken and barely usable, we have lost the welding suit, we have no crew, and the door still hasn’t been replaced properly.  I start to think that if I want something done I’m going to have to do it myself.

*

The young filmmaker arrived while I was stoking, right after the third kiln-shelf-door had disintegrated in my hands, causing yet more minor burns, and major irritation.  How do you maintain your relationship, seeing as you’re both artists? He asked, innocent of the drama that had occurred immediately before his arrival.  The only answer to this question is that I’m in love with him, still, always–because god damn, sometimes I really can’t deny that this is pure and utter madness.

*

I was especially annoyed that in the haste of loading the kiln, I wasn’t able to inspect the final configuration of the firebox.  Yes, I had said just put my work wherever.  But I didn’t anticipate that he was going to completely ignore the long-standing request I have had for many years, to at least not put *only* my work in the armpit of the firebox.  Is there any competition between the two of you? The filmmaker asks.  Oh gosh no.  We’re just occasionally completely at odds.

*

After I broke down and posted the snippy comment on a Facebook thread of his in response to what I perceived as his passive aggressive erasure of me, and his self-indulgent luxuriating in the fact that he did a thirty-five hour shift that could have been entirely avoided with just a little bit of forethought and planning, we had an argument under a canopy of the creamy froth of reduction smoke as it swirled around our heads.  When you post shit like that, you really come across as a real bitch you know, he said, and I hurled back, Oh Yes, I know, and I’m *Fine* with that.  How else do you think I’m still *ALIVE*?

*

I constantly struggle with what it means to be a woman artist, a mother artist, a wife artist.  Constantly failing at everything, constantly failing at the project of being dignified and gracious.  Acknowledging this reality is being difficult.  Refusing to accept this reality is bitchiness, and worse.

*

After everyone left, he and I sat together in the gathering dusk, and talked about when to close the kiln down, and how to approach cooling, and the trip to St. Andrews to deliver the work to Sunbury Shores.  I finished my stoking shift, and he took over, and we remarked on the luscious layer of glaze that, we had to admit, looked incredibly promising.

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