Figures with absent landscapes VI

Diary of an artist in residence, University of Nottingham, VIth and final part, 7-21 November 2017

See the note to the reader in the first post of this diary.

7 November

Yesterday morning Marie drove me from home to the motorway entrance in the centre of Orange. My publisher and a friend picked me up from there a bit later in a van that they had rented in Marseille, loaded with boxes full of books and several pieces of furniture. We headed for Paris and reached Le Grand Palais around five o’clock in the afternoon. Two other friends joined. Before nine the five of us had emptied the van, parked it somewhere in the surroundings and mostly completed the installation of Le Bec en l’air’s stand for Paris Photo, the international photography fair due to be launched two days later. This is our first participation in the event. I slept moderately.

This morning we finished the set up of the stand. In terms of a lunch I ate an atrocious seven euros greasy ham and cheese sandwich bought from a charlatans’ stall within the Grand Palais, that stuck in my craw for the rest of the day. Thieves.

Around two in the afternoon the second part of my journey started. From Le Grand Palais I went to Gare du Nord by taxi, from Gare du Nord to London St Pancras via the Chunnel and from St Pancras to Nottingham in a local train, carrying an overload of luggages for the whole trip: my backpack on the back, my camera bag over the neck, a suitcase full of copies of my new Nepali book in the left hand plus a fifteen kilos, one meter long tube on the right shoulder, which contained fifteen PVC banners that I’d had printed earlier this week by Tristan in Meysse and that constituted the soon to be launched exhibition of the outcome of my residence in Nottingham.

I’ve been in such a haste for the last couple of weeks that I haven’t even had the time to take a look at these banners. I saw and approved the two first ones. The other thirteen will be a surprise. But they are heavy, for sure. Twenty-four square meters of thick plastic. I felt like a yak but deprived of a packsaddle. It made me think of a story told by Mark Kozelek on his Lost Verses Live album. In between two songs he suddenly addresses the audience: “Do you guys appreciate me or what? Do you appreciate me? I’m just asking because I met a woman on the Amtrak, I was with all my bags and merch and guitars, and she said: where are you coming from? I said: DC. She said: and you’re playing in New York tonight? Yeah! She said: Oh! Guy, and you’re carrying all that shit? I hope people appreciate you! Yeah, I hope they do, too!”.

I don’t know if the Nepalis in Nottingham will appreciate the exhibition of the work that was inspired to me by their family photographs but what I know is that I still lack one signature on the consent form of the University, and that I still have no confirmation that G. and T. will effectively take care of the catering for the opening of the exhibition on next Monday. They said they would do so. But they haven’t sent their quote. So I don’t know what to think. This aside I am happy to be here and happy at the prospect of showing that work at least to the people who took part in the project and, I hope, to a few visitors.

The city is cold already and floating in a drizzle. I am staying here with two of the kids of a friend at home. They live in a shared house not far from Hyson Green, the area where many Nepalis live. Ambre has been working here as a graphic designer for some years. She (and her sister who doesn’t live here) happen to be my models when I do fashion photography sessions for their mum. By their generosity both of them somehow taught me how to do that kind of images. Marius, their younger brother, is repeating his year twelve here in order to improve his English skills. Another person occupies a third room. And the fourth room is rented by a girl who is in Bangladesh until Christmas and accepted to sublet it to me.

Marius, whom I have known since he was seven or eight, welcomed me. Ambre was out. We had a nice chat then I had a nice sleep.

8 November

Usual back-to-Nottingham activities downtown: topping up the bus card, buying coffee for breakfasts at home, visiting the record store, then at the University for lunch with Jean-Xavier. I offered him a copy of my Nepali book, which seemed to make him sincerely glad. A few phone calls then to G. and T. It is a very busy time again for them. I don’t know when we are going to meet.

I begun the transcription of the conversation with G. and Jean-Xavier that we recorded at the end of September. It is a shame that I haven’t had the time to do that before, but so is it.

9 November

Jean-Xavier picked me up from home this morning with the exhibition banners and the suitcase of books. We opened the tube in his office and discovered the prints together. Tristan did a good work. We are setting up the exhibition at the Highfield House tomorrow.

I visited G. to offer him my book and to check if everything was arranged for the catering of the opening on Monday (I’m far from being done with expectations…). His wife was there, whom I met for the first time. They welcomed me warmly. G. accepted the book with a combination of gratefulness and distance so common to Nepalis when they are offered a present that I recognised it immediately.

Concerning the catering G. believes that T., who had agreed last time to provide the drinks, might not be able to do it because he is launching a new restaurant soon which prevents him from doing anything else than preparing for that happening. I have to check that. In that case G. might be able to replace him. But he too is overburdened with obligations. Something more to worry about, thus. Awaiting answers to questions on which my work depend has already sabotaged many of my nights here and elsewhere. This will not diminish the beauty of the relationships that arose from this project but having put myself in a situation where I so constantly have to rely on other people’s word and engagement, and where I am therefore placing expectations onto them, will probably remain the major failure of this residence.

I stayed one hour at G.’s house. He spent forty-five minutes on the phone, speaking with clients of his IT company, solving issues, fixing his wife’s phone, then when we were about to have a time slot to exchange a few words an estate agent arrived. If I had a doubt about what “busy” means, it is henceforth dispelled. They never stop.

G.’s mother-in-law is still there. She has been staying with them for five months. She is going back to Nepal on Tuesday, which makes her happy and sad at the same time – happy because she feels bored here and sad because she will be away from her children again when she leaves.

According to G. there will not be many people attending the opening on Monday because there is a birthday party somewhere. The same obstacle again as with the projection of Kesang’s film last time – very few people attended it because there was a wedding in town. It made me think about the project slantwise again. What I haven’t been able to create with the Nepali community is a dynamic. Beautiful individual relations, yes. Confidence, generosity, interest, yes, at various personal levels. But no collective interaction, really. Spending time together and sharing feelings about their life is something that they gladly do. But participating in activities that don’t emanate from within the community seems to be beyond the possibilities. It might be a matter of time. I wonder if this has to do with a self-protection effort aiming at retaining the community as an infrangible whole so as to give each of their members all the chances to survive in their immersion into alterity.

10 November

This morning we set up the exhibition with Jean-Xavier in the Highfield house, a beautiful cloister behind the Trent building on the University Park Campus. Lisa McCabe, who co-ordinated many aspects of our submission to the Leverhulme Trust, was there, too. Without her I wouldn’t be here. She is the one who reviewed our project application in 2015 and advised us to work an extra year on it. She was right. Her advice helped us to write a far more thoughtful proposition.

The exhibition consist in a kiosk equipped with a large touch-sensitive screen where the e-kus are shown and of fourteen banners distributed all around the cloister. There is a title banner at the entrance, three banners of explanatory texts including screenshots of some e-kus displayed on a wall, then ten stands with banners reproducing frame by frame sequences of the four hundred and twenty-five frames (seventeen seconds times twenty-five frames per second) of a selection of e-kus. Another title banner stands in the art gallery at Lake Side. The e-kus are also shown in side rooms.

When this was done Jean-Xavier insisted on me obtaining D. R.’s missing signature of the University’s consent form before the opening – which meant today, for tomorrow I’m going to Paris Photo for the week-end. D. R. promised to bring the paper on Monday but the University is rather legalistic about ethics, so I complied. G. gave me D. R.’s restaurant address. It’s away from town further west than Beeston and not accessible by the usual NTC bus. I went straight there but I arrived a bit early in front of a closed restaurant. I let time pass in a neighbouring pub. Then around half past four I tried my luck. The door was open. D. R. was there with a young boy, that I had already met at the wedding in Leicester in June, and some other family members. D. R. welcomed me with apologies for not replying my previous emails and text messages for lack of time. I offered him my book. He and his relatives looked at it very slowly and carefully, keen at touching it and manipulating it and in the same time with a bit of self-restraint similar to G.’s when I offered him the book, the actual reason of which will probably never cease eluding me unless I become myself a Nepali.

When I left D. R. I took a taxi to the Gurkha Kitchen in Bilborough to see Andeep and give him also a copy of my book. His behaviour with the book was very different. He looked at every picture, and strongly pressed the book open with the flat of his hand after turning each page, vivacious, curious, unceremonious and happy all at once. He seemed sincerely moved and thanked me many times for that present. Then he disappeared back to attending to his duty. A bit later I was summoned to the kitchen by the assistant chef who enquired about what I wanted to eat… I came back home late.

I am wondering every day what a photograph and a photography book are. I don’t have a fixed answer to these questions. Yet I wonder if they are also question for my Nepali friends here. I wonder for instance if their relation with art, which is still mainly religious in Nepal, has evolved during their life abroad towards a larger spiritual and intellectual dimension. In particular, I would like to know if they invest the book as an object with the same precious power, the same nearly magical potential that I tend to attribute to it, of containing possibilities to broaden one’s knowledge and imagination. I’ll ask them.

11 November

I woke up at half past four this morning. A taxi, two trains, two metros and six hours later I was at the Grand Palais again where Paris Photo had opened to the public two days earlier.

I had mixed feelings in there. I felt a sincere and unreserved happiness for my publishers, for they worked extremely hard to create the conditions for their participation in that event to occur, thereby allowing themselves to show the international photography audience the work they have achieved in the past fifteen years. I was also happy to show my own books to the people who were interested – and there were quite a few, some whom I knew and others whom I didn’t, and all were curious, attentive and generous. Happy too because we sold a lot of books, which after all is the goal of that fair.

But simultaneously the vanity of this whole enterprise overwhelmed me, if it didn’t even make me despondent. I felt oppressed by the sense I always get in similar circumstances (the gathering of any specific milieu), that everyone is fundamentally bereft of any doubt whatsoever with regards to the normality and the soundness of the social links and interactions at work. Each glance under that dome, each face, each silhouette and movement was connected to beings who seemed to be so sure of themselves, of their good taste, of their being at the right place, their belonging to the appropriate club. But as for me, I don’t understand certainties. Yet I am one of them. I was there, too, in the same place, and there is no reason to believe that while looking at me they did not feel the same absurd self-assurance that I was feeling when looking at them.

Patrick Le Bescont, the founder and director of Filigranes, was our neighbour, which was of a great relief in this strained and competitive atmosphere. A late visitor came around half past seven, half an hour before the fair closed. She got absorbed in the cover of my Nepali book. Along with the standard edition of the book we also propose a signed and limited edition with a signed and numbered pigmented inkjet print of the cover photograph done by myself, nine copies only, sold in a beautiful bespoke case made out of a sheet of Nepali daphne paper crafted and sewn by Marie. The lady explained that she fell in love with that photograph and that she had never bought an original print before. She decided that this would be the first one. Il was deeply moved. I felt like I owed her something, something more that consideration and respect, like time or words… I told her the story of that photograph, of that print, of that book. Maybe she didn’t want me to do so, I don’t know, but she listened carefully, she asked questions, she seemed happy. It was beautiful.

12 November

After a good night in the little alcove at the apartment of my friends who infallibly welcome me each time I need to come to Paris, I went back to the Grand Palais. I stayed there for three hours before going back again to the train station. I did not sell a single copy of neither mine nor anyone else’s books. I even felt bored at some point. I saw Christian Caujolle passing by and went to greet him. He made me think of Serge Daney again. I talked with several friends including Isabelle Darrigrand whom I had met at Photo Kathmandu in 2015 and who incidentally happened to be a member of my jury when I graduated from the École d’Arles the year after. There were also some former students.

Back to Nottingham in the evening. A Chimay at the Belgo café. Tomorrow is the opening of the exhibition. G. is taking care of the whole catering. Jean-Xavier suggested that he might say a word on behalf of the community on that occasion. I texted the request to G. who replied: “I’ll talk to you later Frederic”. T. An extra hour of anxiety. Is something wrong? Is he going to cancel his presence at the last minute? Well, no. He called a bit later to tell me that he just wasn’t keen at giving a speech because he wanted to focus on his catering duty.

13 November

The exhibition opened at half past twelve. About twenty-five people came including Lisa McCabe and Nicola McLelland, the head of school. There were quite a lot of students (a lunch would follow!). D. R. came, too. And G. of course. But he got lost on the campus with the lunch in his car. He already got lost twice before, once when I introduced him to Jean-Xavier in March and once when we recorded that interview together in June (that I still have to transcribe, how slow it goes…) (2018 edit: it is now online). So I had advised him to leave Arnold early. Which he did but not early enough. I tried to guide him on the phone for more than half an hour. Unsuccessfully. Luckily he stopped going round in circles so that D. R. could find him and eventually lead him to the Highfield House. Lisa waited for them outside and helped them to offload the food. But we had to start the presentation without the three of them. It was set in a room adjacent to the cloister. Nicola and Jean-Xavier inaugurated the show with a brief speech. I couldn’t really focus on mine. Every other two seconds I was glancing at the door behind me to check for any movement from which I could have inferred that the friends had arrived. They finally did but too late to attend the projection of the e-kus because they had to display the dishes on the tables in the cloister instead. People did not ask many questions about the work after the presentation except for two women who had arrived a bit later and had watched the e-kus carefully. They shared their impressions and mentioned some of the details they had noticed, like the nearly imperceptible apparition of some photographs through the windows of a train. This made them eager to watch the films several times, which I appreciated because in my idea that’s what they are made for. The women were from Palestine. They were touched by the reflections on the migratory experience of people and by my attempt to evoke what I perceived as a sort of “definitive hole” created by exile in the middle of their existence.

I watched the seventeen e-kus on the kiosk with G., D.R. and a member of G.’s staff who had come to help serving the lunch. They seemed to enjoy. The lunch was great. The tea tasted like in Kathmandu. I had ordered food for fifty guests. The twenty-five of us were obviously hungry because we almost ate everything up.

An unexpected dimension of this journey from the University to Paris Photo fair and back is that it placed me at the junction of two importances. By “importance” I mean a “relation to self-importance” (one’s and other’s) – that is to say, a battlefield where power is at stake. Well, it didn’t exactly “place me at a junction”. Let us try to be more precise. I’d rather say that it made me the space of encounter, as well as the observation post, of two importances. Both similar though ignorant of each other. At least so is my assumption that struggles for power in the international photography sphere and in the English academic knowledge market occur rather independently one from another. They have thus few if any reasons to coincide neither to be experienced nearly simultaneously by an observer. These worlds hardly interact and are even maybe irreconcilable. Yet building bridges between both was the proposed goal of the Leverhulme Trust grant. I don’t know if my own residence helped but the intention of the grant incites me to believe that the said bridges have so far been at the very least scarce – and they will long be for the grant does not exist any more. No doubt though that struggles themselves are equally fierce in either territory. Power-addict people here and there look like they are they are entangled in a battle for the governance of the world. They play their role so naturally and posture with such a goodwill, each of them being as convinced as the other of the legitimacy, the singularity and the absoluteness of their aim… Anthropologically this is questioning because in truth they are at best striving to rule a portion of a remote region of human activities, yet without any guarantee of success.

Besides, as soon as I frequent one of these territories even to a modest extent, despite having abdicated any aspiration to anything more deluding than sporadically emitting a feeble signal towards the external world, I am embedded in struggles that are not mine and in which the freedom to participate or not evades me. As an actor in each of these fields, albeit temporarily and of a negligible influence, my presence, my actions and my work are utilised as elements of these struggles – not necessarily against me but, regardless of my will that it be so or not, by people who lean on it to consolidate their respective power. Which forces me to take position, or at least to assert more firmly where I am speaking from.

I hope that Pierre is going to finish the editing of the interview we recorded in June because it exactly speaks about that.

14 November

Tired, and of an unusual sort of fatigue. The pressure of a year of work has started to decrease – but has only started to do so for I still have one commitment to fulfil. Tomorrow I promised to give a lecture at the University in which I will look at my Nepal-Qatar work in an oblique way with the notion of authenticity in mind. I like the idea, because when related to photography my understanding of the notion of authenticity changed a lot over the time. But I haven’t had much time to prepare it so I hope that it will be decent. I spent most of the day drawing up the plan for this intervention and preparing the series of pictures that I will screen. I did it at the Highfield House, surrounded by the banners of the exhibition, hearing some of the sounds of the e-kus from the kiosk in the opposite corner of the cloister. It is going to be my headquarters for the rest of my stay.

15 November

Obviously “most of the day” yesterday was not enough. Today indeed I stayed in the cloister again and worked as late as until the lecture began in order to be ready for the presentation. The event was organised by Jean-Xavier as part of the Travel Cultures Network, which was also the framework of the 2013 workshop about the Silk Road in which I had been invited to take part. But this time only a few persons showed up, which raised questions about the interest of people for trans-disciplinary approaches, if not about myself. I think that it has partly to do with the fact that scholars and students feel obliged to focus on their own course and career development and thus have limited time to engage in other activities, especially those activities that they believe will have no direct repercussions on the development in question. It is probably a consequence of the commodification of knowledge that is at work everywhere.

Nevertheless the people who came were fully immersed in the discussion and asked many questions, which allowed me to understand how much this idea of authenticity is pertinent. For instance several questions were raised about my own perception of how people in my photographs would like, or would have liked, to be represented. When the migrants in Qatar send pictures of themselves to their family they always avoid to provide them with photographs of situations in which they don’t look their best. Which means: they don’t send photos of them in the camps. When they want a nice portrait of themselves they manage to go to the Corniche, or to a mall, or to an avenue with green borders or to a garden of some sort… Yet I photographed them in their camps most of the time. I did it from a perspective that I thought was respectful. But what about them?

Then this lecture forced me to extrapolate these questions from the Nepali migrants in Qatar issue to a broader level and to interrogate the authenticity of photography itself. I already discussed those topics with myself in the year that followed the earthquake. I was then wondering what could be the necessity for which absolutely any situation, on the sole pretext of its existence or its occurrence, should mechanically become potentially to be documented. And I still am. Must there really be a documentary equivalent of any human situation for the reason that a photographer came to know about it? I am not sure. Especially because the status of the document is not clear. What can be the authenticity of a photograph, a body of work or a film that is claimed to be a way to raise awareness about a given situation but in the same time is utilised by the photographer to construct his or her own image in the very competitive and sometimes ferocious photographic sphere?

16 November

Speaking about L’Usure du Monde in Jean-Xavier’s seminar about travel literature in the morning.

Writing the rest of the day at the exhibition.

17 November

I guided my two young hosts in the exhibition. A few other people had come since yesterday and had written comments in the visitor’s book. Some of them were exiles from Russia who wrote a note in French about the sadness of the photographs. Then I went downtown and bought some fabrics for Marie from an Indian woman whom I already visited last time.

Jean-Xavier’s invited me at home for the week-end. A quiet time. Guitars. Books. Discussions. No more pressure.

18 November

Writing. Practising Villa-Lobos 1st étude on Jean-Xavier’s Lowden crossover guitar. A voyage of some sort. Still feeling a bit guilty like if I should be working, but it is going better. Actually I should be working. The list of the tasks that I need to complete in the coming weeks is far too long. But the emergency level is no longer as high as it was in the recent months.

Alisha, my friend from Bombay, whom I met at Photo Kathmandu in 2015 and who proofread the previous parts of this diary, is studying in London this year. She had planned to come to Nottingham tomorrow. We were going to visit the exhibition then spend some time together chatting about Nepal and about her classes at Courtauld Institute of arts and other projects. Well, she called to cancel this trip. Too much work. I felt disappointed to an unexpected extent. We’ll have other occasions to meet up, it is not about that. It is more about connecting this whole year here to a larger familiar world. If if wasn’t for Jean-Xavier I would feel a bit lonely here this time.

19 November

I don’t know why I have had “Le Cabaret vert” in mind these days.

Depuis huit jours, j’avais déchiré mes bottines
Aux cailloux des chemins. J’entrais à Charleroi.
Au Cabaret-Vert : je demandai des tartines
De beurre et du jambon qui fut à moitié froid.

Bienheureux, j’allongeai les jambes sous la table
Verte : je contemplai les sujets très naïfs
De la tapisserie. – Et ce fut adorable,
Quand la fille aux tétons énormes, aux yeux vifs,

– Celle-là, ce n’est pas un baiser qui l’épeure! –
Rieuse, m’apporta des tartines de beurre,
Du jambon tiède, dans un plat colorié,

Du jambon rose et blanc parfumé d’une gousse
D’ail, – et m’emplit la chope immense, avec sa mousse
Que dorait un rayon de soleil arriéré.

Arthur Rimbaud (1)

For long I sincerely believed that this text was a manifesto, a viewpoint indicator, a compass. Something like life itself, maybe. This is what being alive meant. I lived in that sonnet. It is back again. Strangely enough it is back at a moment when I am absolutely ready for a phase of “ferocious sedentariness” (Nicolas Bouvier), and of a silent sort, with no interaction at all.

I got a message from T. inviting me in Mansfield tomorrow for the grand opening of his new restaurant.

Since Alisha is not coming I stayed at home played more guitar with Jean-Xavier in the morning. I taught him the chords progression of Vill-Lobos’ étude. That was nice. After lunch he went to the cinema with his daughter. I went to Beeston to give a copy of my book to P. This is maybe one of the most beautiful rewards of this residence: watching how each of them reacted when they received the book. P. said: “thank you. I support people who work for a better world. Is it available online? I will tell my daughter to buy it. I hope that media will follow because nowadays the success of a book depends on media coverage. I wish it will sell!” And in the Jana Andolan chapter he recognised nearly ten people!

Then I went back to the kids’ home whose mother had advised them to request me to bake some chapatis for dinner. If she said so. With a chickpeas curry and a bottle of wine.

20 November

Alex and his wife came to see the exhibition this morning, which was nice. Along with Jean-Xavier, Lisa, Nicola and a few others they are the only staff members of the University that I saw during my days at the Highfield House.

Then I went back to the Commercial Inn to collect the momos that I had ordered yesterday and went to eat them with Jean-Xavier for lunch. It was also the occasion to say him goodbye and thank him for the beautiful collaboration. Until next time.

In the late afternoon I took the train to Mansfield to pay my respects to T. and wish him good success for his new restaurant – well, and have a wonderful Nepali dinner. The atmosphere was gentle and bustling at the same time, if this is possible (I am sure it is, in a Nepali context). Musicians were there, I think I recognised some of them from the wedding in Leicester. They were playing special songs dedicated to each important person in the community, and invited them on stage for a dance.

T. sat me at the “official” table. I spent a nice moment with a town councillor who had been requested to cut the red ribbon at the inauguration of the restaurant on behalf of a colleague who couldn’t attend the show. He had thought that it would take him a few minutes or so. He didn’t even know that there were Nepalis in town and had no idea about their culture or their capacity to welcome people. He didn’t regret to have accepted. When I arrived he had already been there for more than an hour and had a few beers. He had been decked out with a beautiful topi, the traditional Nepali hat, and soon he was very naturally dancing on stage with all the Nepali friends, twirling his hands in the air like if he had known these slightly precious gestures forever. When he came back to his seat a plethora of dishes had been served and wine had been poured in our glasses. I taught him how to scoop the dal with a small piece of chapati. He couldn’t believe what was happening. Amazed by such a demonstration of good-heartedness, his eyes were shining and his heart was full of a kind of joyful energy that he had rarely experienced before.

T. sat with us when he had the time to sit. I offered him my book. His daughter was helping him serving the guests. She watched the book with him for a while. They took me in their arms. They seemed deeply grateful that I had made the trip to Mansfield. D. arrived a bit later. He was the last one of the participants in my project that I hadn’t met yet this time. I had withdrawn the last available copy of my book from the cabinet at the exhibition for him. He received it with curiosity and gentleness. He clasped me warmly. Their response to this simple present only added to the emotion engendered by the other friends’ reaction.

I don’t know how these relationships will evolve over time and in the distance. What I feel is that after a year of regular discussions and shared activities it is only now that they start to encompass me in their general landscape. And only at an individual level. One hypothesis crossed my mind: if not much, or not enough, happened between me and the community as a group, it might be partly because the community does not really exist. There exist only individualities, or small temporary gatherings of individualities.

It was a beautiful party to end this residence. T. posted a beautifully blurred and shaky video of the opening.

A young man drove me back to Nottingham. We listen to Nepali hip-hop music and talked about his life.

21 November

En route.



Sincerest thanks to Jean-Xavier Ridon, the University of Nottingham, the Leverhulme Trust and to all of you who opened your door to me and made this experience possible. Thanks to you as well, Reader, who persevered and followed me thus far.

नमस्ते र फेरी भेटौला ।

(1) I found a translation of this poem online entitled “At the Green Inn, Five in the Evening” though without a mention of its author. Furthermore I am a bit frustrated by its rather bleak tone. I would have thought that 150 years after its writing a more inspired translation of that gem would have appeared somewhere. The world on the one hand, and but words on the other, but here it is, though:
“For a whole week I had ripped up my boots
On the stones of the roads. I walked into Charleroi;
Into the Green Inn: I asked for some slices
Of bread and butter, and some half-cooled ham.
Happy, I stuck out my legs under the green
Table: I studied the artless patterns of the
Wallpaper – and it was charming when the girl
With the huge breasts and lively eyes,
– A kiss wouldn’t scare that one! –
Smilingly brought me some bread and butter
And lukewarm ham, on a coloured plate; –
Pink and white ham, scented with a clove of garlic –
And filled my huge beer mug, whose froth was turned
Into gold by a ray of late sunshine.”

Photographs: On the campus of the University in Nottingham, Great-Britain, 20 November 2017;
The Gurkha Junction restaurant grand opening, Mansfield, Great-Britain, 20 November 2017 .

Not proofread yet.

The e-kus created during the residence are available online in the Stories section of this website.

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