Anna Elena Eyre with Afton Wilky

Afton Wilky
Afton Wilky

This interview focuses on Wilky’s new book, Clarity Speaks of a Crystal Sea.

Anna Elena Eyre: Clarity Speaks of a Crystal Sea is an immersive book. There is no title page, copyright page or other material most often encountered at the beginning of a book. Instead, the reader is dropped into text on the cover, which leads to overlapping text on the inside cover facing a page of text printed on top of photographed pieces of text. This rests on strips of paper, which resist the two-dimensionality of paper, as the strips are folded to reach away from the surface and display shadow.

Several pages in, the reader encounters a photographed page of two strips of text. These strips reveal bits of text that have been cut off or are folded, and as such cannot be fully read. What one can read (“His din ers”; “The ear is one of these bodies. Every hum being”) speaks further to this tension between the edges of dimension when immersed. In these lines, I read every human being as a hum being—as a being who hears (is vibrational), but the din often errs (as a word’s semantic meaning is never static). Words and humans cannot be stripped of vibration (as even sign-language/brail conjure energy) and yet, when we read two-dimensional pages, we might be prone to forget this. Can you speak/write more to how you envision these tensions informing your work?