October 23rd, 2006
a million universes all connected


what a journey i am on these days, (in between working on ‘the books’). what I cannot seem to get over is, how in doing my “research” (life process/investigations) all of my readings are somehow connected to each other. I feel a bit like a character in an Umberto Eco novel. this may seem obvious, due to the ‘cross-culture’ nature of artists and writers and there will always be links between them (visible or not). but these links (between my readings and my life experiences lately) continue to surprise me.
for example, I am currently studying the concept of phenomenology, which brings me to a number of different authors and concepts while at the same time working on a book that incoporates all of these philosophies, on the subject of guerilla art, (only I didn’t know that when I originally wrote the book). I am now and always was a phenomenolgist but didn’t know it. this pursuit brings me to new concepts and artists, (psychogeography, alan fletcher, fluxus, allan kaprow, eva hesse, modernism, David Abram, the art of the everyday, john cage, culture jamming, walt whitman, the situationists, jane jacobs, the list goes on,) they are all connected to space, nature, the everyday, movement, poetry, art, community, creativity, chance, and jumping off the edge of the known world.
last week i bought a card with a picture of walt whitman on the front it, (not knowing who it was at first), because he had such beautiful eyes, and for the line “Let your soul stand cool and composed before a million universes.”
now i am reading whitman everywhere. today a stranger sends me the most amazing book about corita kent (to which I am eternally grateful) and I open it up and read,
“His [Whitman's] favourite occupation seemed to be strolling or sauntering about outdoors by himself, looking at the grass, the trees, the flowers, the vistas of light, the varying aspects of the sky, and listening to the birds, the crickets, the tree frogs, and all the hundres of natural sounds. It was evident that these things gave him a pleasure far beyond what they give to ordinary people.” ~John Dewey
every day that i wake up i cannot wait to see what new connections the day will bring.
(one observation I have made is that EVERYONE is connected to john cage.)
time to clean up the pile of books at my feet, put away my research for the time being, eat some lentil soup for lunch, and later sweep the floor.
even if you discover all of the secrets of the universe during your research, the floor still needs sweeping.

Oct 23 2006
2:58 pm
Mary Jane Mansfield writes:

Hi Keri
YOU are the Universal link I have discovered recently… Growing up in a pre-computerized creative era… That really makes me sound ancient… I actually had no idea what the blog was all about.. Lucky for me You were listed in the contributors section of HOW magazine… You have inspired me greatly and now I am posting my own on line journal.. passing on the inspiration…
xoxoxox Mary Jane
p.s. When I figure out how to set up links… You will be there!

Oct 23 2006
3:35 pm
kirsten writes:

all those synchronicities mean that you’re headed in the right direction.

Oct 23 2006
4:47 pm
polly writes:

i’m wondering what the book about corita kent is called?? i’d love to ferret it out myself.

Oct 23 2006
4:58 pm
Aurora writes:

Hi Keri, I am a new secret fan of yours. Your work makes me wish I could be a guerilla artist, but I will have to admire guerilla artists instead, at least for now. Anyway, I love your writing and perspective. Thank you for sharing of your lovely self.
Warmly yours,
Aurora

Oct 23 2006
5:59 pm
Claire/Lola is Beauty writes:

I love that last line, reminds me of a book I read called something like “After The Enlightenment, The Laundry”. I can’t remember who wrote it…

Oct 23 2006
6:15 pm
herhimnbryn writes:

Walt would have approved K. :)

Oct 23 2006
7:07 pm
~jodi lynn writes:

Yes, please tell us more about the book about Corita.
I would love to learn more about her. I credit her for my art epiphany of sorts. I bought her book on a whim in my college bookstore (it, of course, wasn’t on my class lists — I always bought extra books because i couldn’t resist!) and I have always wished she’d been able to write more…I remember seeing the part on carving erasers, and I was so excited because i’d been doing that since I was nine.
oh, and i got my extremely informative period charts in the mail today — I’d had those two originally, but had to have more for my friends. They *are* very useful.
thanks and i hope all is well in your world.

Oct 23 2006
7:21 pm
keri Smith writes:

the corita book is so wonderful I don’t know where to begin. I will write about it at length soon. i too had been seaching for years for more from her, to no avail. I ‘think’ it is this one. It is actually a big box full of prints, a book, and excerpts from reviews. an incredible find. I am grateful to woman named Jan who had read of my interest in corita and so graciously offered it to me.
i spent my afternoon spreading all the prints out onto the floor. There is even an article written by corita, which i will quote from at some point.
k

Oct 23 2006
7:21 pm
keri Smith writes:

the corita book is so wonderful I don’t know where to begin. I will write about it at length soon. i too had been seaching for years for more from her, to no avail. I ‘think’ it is this one. It is actually a big box full of prints, a book, and excerpts from reviews. an incredible find. I am grateful to woman named Jan who had read of my interest in corita and so graciously offered it to me.
i spent my afternoon spreading all the prints out onto the floor. There is even an article written by corita, which i will quote from at some point.
k

Oct 23 2006
7:21 pm
keri Smith writes:

the corita book is so wonderful I don’t know where to begin. I will write about it at length soon. i too had been seaching for years for more from her, to no avail. I ‘think’ it is this one. It is actually a big box full of prints, a book, and excerpts from reviews. an incredible find. I am grateful to woman named Jan who had read of my interest in corita and so graciously offered it to me.
i spent my afternoon spreading all the prints out onto the floor. There is even an article written by corita, which i will quote from at some point.
k

Oct 23 2006
7:30 pm
julie R writes:

i am a new admirer of yours too. i found your wish jar on the shelf of the chocolate and zucchini blog. i’ve been reading your blog regularly but never commented until now. you always have such wonderful links to treasures everywhere, and i thought maybe i’d offer someone, a connection to everything else, just in case you hadn’t heard of him yet.
gaston bachelard– particularly his book ‘the poetics of space.’
also georges perec, and particularly his book ‘species of spaces and other pieces.’ i swear if you haven’t already, you will fall head over heels in love with him.

Oct 23 2006
7:35 pm
keri Smith writes:

see this is what i’m talking about. i just ordered the ‘poetics of space’ today!

Oct 23 2006
7:35 pm
keri Smith writes:

see this is what i’m talking about. i just ordered the ‘poetics of space’ today!

Oct 23 2006
7:35 pm
keri Smith writes:

see this is what i’m talking about. i just ordered the ‘poetics of space’ today!

Oct 23 2006
11:21 pm
Mike writes:

What a great photo…

Oct 24 2006
8:35 am
Anastasia writes:

Isn’t phenomenology the best thing ever!

Oct 24 2006
8:26 pm
rachel writes:

There are connections everywhere! And in another classic example, I too thought of After the Ecstasy, the Laundry: How the Heart Grows Wise on the Spiritual Path by Jack Kornfield, and came to the comments to write that too…see Keri, you build community EVERYWHERE.

Oct 25 2006
9:35 am
Surfer writes:

Discovering new connections in our lives always makes everything feel so much more meaningful and magical.
If we stop and take notice, we’ll find that specific themes repeat themselves in many facets of daily life. When we choose to pay attention, we’ll often find the answers we’ve been looking for.
As we keep moving forward, it can sometimes be a challenge to choose what specifically to do next. Paying attention to connections will inspire and refresh and will help so much in business, personal life, and overall happiness.
I just discovered your blog today and love it! … and there was a connection there too! – blogs, ideas, creativity, business and most interestingly, the sharing of a similar experience… being a bram-native. I will definitely be visiting.

Oct 25 2006
10:08 am
Arlia writes:

Thank you, thank you, thank you. Thank you for speaking your heart in every moment an being your authentic self. It gives us all courage.
arlia :)

Oct 25 2006
2:18 pm
Boho writes:

Whitman sounds like a kindred spirit indeed…

Oct 25 2006
4:37 pm
Jenna writes:

I can totally relate to this! When this happens to me I feel like I’m really in the “flow.” I think it’s like another comment said, it’s all about paying attention. I think the connections are always there on some level, but when you notice it you really FEEL part of the magic!

Oct 25 2006
5:54 pm
Sabine writes:

This is all very true. From my ecpierience, if you think about anything for long enough, it will eventually relate back to the entire univers and everything in it. No matter how obscure.
Wonderful post :-) I’ve been looking int o psychogeography a lot lately…

Oct 25 2006
10:14 pm
jasai writes:

i love that last line dearly. it is so human. so basic. so right.

Oct 26 2006
1:40 pm
kristine writes:

Funny, as in stange coincidence…
I am working on a paper that is a reflection of how Walt Whitman’s poem Passage to India connects with the idea of globalization…

Oct 26 2006
2:07 pm
skeeter writes:

Argh, u keep recommending all these books, but where I’m living currently, there are no public libraries, very few bookstores in English… :( Deep longing for Chapters-Indigo.
Cool pic of Whitman..

Oct 27 2006
12:39 am
~Abbey Marie~ writes:

I actually discovered all these “connections” recently myself. My mother informed me that a person did a study that through seven people we can know any one else on the entire world. Just think, through seven people you could know Ghandi, or the President, or your favorite actress or band! I also know that whenever my parents buy, say, a red car, they suddenly see how many red cars are actually being driven around. My friend once said the word “ergo” (which means: therefore) and I became enamored with it, and suddenly it seemed like every where I turned there was the word “ergo”. On T.V., in my other friends vocabulary, in books, in classes, everywhere!

Oct 27 2006
12:20 pm
Tammy writes:

I find things connect with me as well, and it makes me feel like I’m on track, going in the right direction, like this is what I’m supposed to be doing even though the end is so unclear. My dissertation deals with memories and the everyday, recently finished a jewelry book on memory jewelry which came out of the blue, and now here I read this post. Cool.

Oct 28 2006
5:35 am
Fatemeh writes:

I myself experienced such thing. when I strart to think about a new thing and it seems, the world starts to answer.
I think world is dynamic phenomena, and shows reaction to our thoughts.
before I saw a japanese research program on TV, that shows even our walking on the earth…
has effect on far universe and its shape!

Oct 28 2006
11:17 pm
Catherine Witherell writes:

Nice!

Oct 29 2006
8:26 am
skeeter writes:

wow i always felt it must be like that, but this japanese research thng really cements it.

Oct 29 2006
12:43 pm
Jennifer VanSchoyck writes:

I totally get that! LAtely Charles Schultz has been every where for me! Quotes, pics popping up in odd places etc. (even before the halloween “season” started!

Oct 30 2006
8:44 am
Kala writes:

I’ve always listened to the connections (or sign posts)that have guided me through life but since starting a blog myself and reading other people’s the connections have gone global and this post is no exception! I studied this very subject at art school about 12 years ago now, not that I knew it had a name as I didn’t really know what I was looking for and had more questions than I had answers. I left college and life and children took over and I never really took it any further but in the last month I have picked up where I left off and have been delving into it all again and have been amazed at how all these answers keep popping up to questions I didn’t even know how to ask. Sorry I’m rambling now but I just wanted to say thank you and keep doing what you do! I’m off to look up phenomenology now…

Nov 1 2006
3:48 pm
lindsay writes:

Keri, I teared up reading your post about Walt Whitman and such. You really keep your heart and eyes open. I have been so shoveled under lately that I forget. Thanks for the reminder. I too feel an agony about being inside as fall flows into more and more color!

Nov 5 2006
9:57 pm
pixie writes:

oh i have missed you and your smiling eyes and your boiling pots…coming here for the first time in a while i am teary and filled up by your observations, your curiosity and how much like uncle walt you are. it is impossible to see and know the exact nature of the gifts we give to one another. so i just want to say thank you, friend…
i love you.
p


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