Poetry / Candice Wuehle
:: & with the intervention of the profession::
:: & of where in the composition ::
From the writer
:: Account ::
The first poem of Party Spirit was written in Laugarvatn, Iceland—a small spa town I was visiting for one month to experience the Midnight Sun. Originally, I was interested in the impact twenty hours a day of sunlight would have on me somatically. I wanted to feel, as CA Conrad says, “seemingly infinite space between body and spirit by using any possible THING around or of the body to channel the body and/or in toward spirit with deliberate and sustained concentration.” The THING of the sun channeled my body into a state of uncertainty, a sense that the clock of my body was not tuned while engaging my spirit with an awareness of a terrible sublime, of a self-smallness that was not a problem but an avenue to understanding the impossible largess of ecology. This manifested through poems concerned with limit experiences and thresholds—masks, skin, steam, laughter, grief, spirituality. The Party Spirit, the X‑cuctioner, The Professional Mourner, and other “characters” became figures that existed in the space resisted definition. The Party Spirit herself is forged through an event she cannot remember that renders her along the edge of a lake I imagine as George Oppen’s “unrimmed hole.” Her promise is represented by her total lack of engagement with the borders of what defines most of us as human: a society, law, time, a sense of how much physical or emotional space she consumes on earth. She herself becomes a site without edges that therefore is unable to consider a “relation” or lack of relation to the substances of her world. She is a generator of possibility; I tried to invest her with Derrida’s notion of “Limitrophy.” She doesn’t spend her life “effacing the limit, but in multiplying its figures, in complicating, thickening, delinearizing, folding, and dividing the line precisely by making it increase and multiple” (Derrida, The Animal that Therefore I Am 29). She connects to animals, weather, time because she no longer knows she is not animal, weather, or time. For me, she is a lockless key. An opening to experiences unimaginable; a “seemingly infinite space”; a radical connecter of experience.
Candice Wuehle is the author of the chapbooks curse words: a guide in 19 steps for aspiring transmographs (Dancing Girl Press, 2014) and EARTH*AIR*FIRE*WATER*ÆTHER (Grey Books Press, 2015). Her work can be found in Tarpaulin Sky, The Volta, The Colorado Review, SPORK, The New Orleans Review, and Juked, among others. She is originally from Iowa City, Iowa and is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Currently she resides in Lawrence, Kansas where she’s a Chancellor’s Fellow at The University of Kansas. She lives with William (a very fat bunny) and her partner, Andrew.