The Harlequin Wander #1

Harlequin

This walk is an activity from ITGLOWS that fits into our category of work entitled: Things To Do With Large Groups of People Who Do and Do Not Know Each Other (or as a solo).

The guiding structure of the walk is to meet at a common point, and from there, wander, collectively making decisions about where to go and how to get there, if anywhere. The group, the individual, and the city structure itself, all play a part in deciding the course of the wander.

I did it today as a solo because no one else came out to walk. It felt fine to hold the space of wandering in the city. I looked at the city infrastructure, I passed by an empty car garage that had some paintings hanging in it, I looked up, I looked down, I stepped over things and scooched by other things. Sometimes I wandered into the street and on down the street, off of the sidewalk. I carried with me a copy of Macbeth, and at some point I flipped it open and read over the following brief monologue:

Who can be wise, amazed, temperate and furious,
Loyal and neutral, in a moment? No man.
The expedition of my violent love
Outrun the pauser reason. Here lay Duncan,
His silver skin laced with his golden blood,
And his gashed stabs looked like a breach in nature
For ruin’s wasteful entrance; there the murderers,
Steeped in the colours of their trade, their daggers
Unmannerly breeched with gore. Who could refrain,
That had a heart to love, and in that heart
Courage to make’s love known?

I read it silently, out loud, and out loud in Italian. (The copy I had with me was a dual language one given to me by K.J. back in 1/09 (For Keith From Italy to you. amore Kj))

There was a moment when I thought I would take a photo and post it to instagram as part of the Jane’s Walk event happening this weekend. When I tapped into the app on my phone, the power went from 90 percent to shutting off. So I put my phone away and wandered on. Tomorrow I’ll bring a film camera and maybe someone (if someone, anyone show’s up to walk) will take a photo and do the whole media posting thing.

It felt great to truly wander the streets. To look at buildings, people, in windows, at clouds, into nothingness. To hear chatter and traffic and clang of infrastructure in use. To peek in alleys, to notice the flowers and their falling petals, to touch old brick buildings in the west village of manhattan, then to taste a cookie from a shop and eat up every crumb.

Tomorrow, another wander. A collective urban drift. With what, to where, who knows?

 

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