The following interview is part of a series of interviews which were conducted as part of a project that was concerned with the subject of failure in relation to Alice Jardine’s concept of ‘gynesis’ (putting into the discourse of “woman”). I wanted to write about the spaces that failure creates, what happens just after the moment of failure, and how that sensation can be a horizon or a void (a generative space); I was also interested in the relationship between failure and rites of passage. Four specific conceptual inquiries were posed to a diverse group of people, who are anonymous here, and phrases from their answers were spliced together to create part of the rhetorical language in a lyric essay that is forthcoming from the online poetics journal, Something on Paper. – Lauren DeGaine
Lauren DeGaine: Please describe the feeling of stepping down when you think there’s a stair and there isn’t.
long-distance best friend: Stepping down seems to be a consequence of sequencing order – like all writing and the sentence – like all writing and the sentence and a particular position to relational time and inscription. I think of Cixous and the resistance to excavation, not that a text needs to mined for some logical conclusion of a particular code and context, but rather some instance of the line between that vibrates, a brief risk of appearing as disappearance.
LD: What does a void mean to you? What does a horizon mean to you?
lbf: Notes on a void: there is a certain indistinguishability that is particularly spatial. The void eludes nominally while still being generative.
Notes on a horizon: the term horizon has poetic potential through its reference to infinity. However, infinity for me is internal, is red. I think of Jardine. I think of the smoothed stone on Brighton Beach, and the burnt pier that haunts that coast. The horizon is the possibility for meaning, a constant approach. Then again, this approach is entirely dependent on my own relative disposition, as is meaning.
LD: Please explain the word, “feminine.”
lbf: I tend to think of the sentence (I have been thinking of sentences) as tensile material that relates to a textual corpus, a loose figure and body, a dismembered and fragmented body that is, crucially, maintained. I also find myself between the immediacy of the historical and the urgency of the social – I think of G&G’s Second Wave Bible (among everyone/who else?), sects, movements, demarcations: all the scripture-making. Perhaps not the social, perhaps some correlation between writing and not dying, or writing as a means of learning how to die, of knowing one form of falling, or the verge of unceasingly forgetting the others’ difference.
Lauren DeGaine is a cross-genre writer, music festival journalist and printmaker who explores language, place, and the body through her work. Originally from Palm Springs, CA, Lauren now lives on Vancouver Island, where she is preparing application materials for MFA programs in Canada and the US. Before arriving on the island, Lauren obtained her bachelor’s degree in Writing and Literature from Naropa University’s Jack Kerouac School in Colorado. Her work has appeared in Betty and Kora, Fest 300, and ineffable.