Rip van Winkle’s Lament

A song about slippage and pyschogeographic silt.

The song uses simile to recast unremembered years as earthy accumulations under a geologist’s hand lens, wherein stacks of stone may be read for their melodramatic revelations. The Earth is a ceaseless churning machine whose mechanics of writing and unwriting history may be repurposed at the scale of human lives and stories. Within this framing, our oral repetition of some anecdotes and suppression of others takes on a distinctly sedimentary quality.

Materials: Charcoal Powder, Paper, Sound

Dimensions: 48” x 36”



I might teethe eulogies,

sift through miles of dumpster speech

to unearth all the words I’ll be.

Calcified lateral lines,

sedimentary slanted rhymes

glue this phrase to the days I’ve died

With elsewhere eyes and empty pockets,

I’ve been swindled by the mountains.

Laid beneath this overburden blanket

stitched from hours the Catskills claimed.

My moments heaped in bedrock sheets,

My metamorphic memories.

As my stories come undone,

in the same breath they’re re-spun.

Was I only every song that I have sung?