The Musings of a Boho Girl

bōˈhēmēən (noun) 1. a free spirit ; 2. a writer; 3. an explorer of the Avant-Garde.

Discovering Felix Gonzalez-Torres

felix-gonzalez-torres-untitled-(last-light)

It was in the late 1990s when I discovered the work of Felix Gonzalez-Torres. The retrospective had ended three years earlier and I realised seeing his work would be a challenge. So I began with The Rosen Gallery, which has represented the artist since 1990. I went to the first exhibition after Gonzalez-Torres’s death in 1996. The Rosen Gallery was my first experience at NYC art gallery and it was memorable. Last month I came across an old catalogue and couldn’t help but think of the knowledgable staff who gave a teenage girl an informal tour, maybe that’s why my interest in Felix Gonzalez-Torres endures.

Read the rest of this entry »

Women’s History Month Reads

 

This month we celebrate the achievements of women. There are so many accomplished women that we could explore such as Ruth First, a South African anti-apartheid activist and journalist, who spent her life seeking equality for all South Africans. First was living in exile when she was assassinated in 1982, but before her death, Ruth First wrote several books including 117 Days, which chronicles her arrest and imprisonment during the apartheid system. First was detained in solitary confinement for 90 days under South African law. 117 Days shaped how I saw anti-apartheid activists and gave me insight into their experience so I wrote a brief Women’s History Month Reading List.

Read the rest of this entry »

How Feminism Works for the Privileged

Embed from Getty Images

I’ve often heard Madeleine Albright’s statement “There is a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women.” I cringed when those words made their way to my Starbucks cup. As someone who didn’t grow up in a generation with women supporting each other, I found it to be confounding.

Read the rest of this entry »

2016 Reading List

Embed from Getty Images

Happy New Year, lovely readers! 2016 is going to be a year of brilliant new books so I’ve put together a reading list that I plan on following this year. My New Year’s Resolution is to read more Javier Marías. We were standing in Plaza Mayor when my friend said Marías lives there. Embarrassed, I finally admitted to him that I didn’t know who Marías was. That was almost ten years ago, since then I’ve seen his work reviewed in the Los Angles Times. Most recently his book, The Infatuations was a finalist for the 2013 National Book Critics Circle Award. I haven’t read The Infatuations but I have read A Heart so White, a haunting novel about the past.

Read the rest of this entry »

Happy Christmas

Dear Readers,
I love everything about Christmas, the smell of evergreen, the flickering trees and poinsettias. It’s the only time of year when it’s perfectly acceptable to eat a dozen of sugar cookies without feeling guilty. So here we are at Christmastime, Mariah Carey’s Merry Christmas is playing nonstop and I’ve lost count of my cookie intake. Hopefully, I can maintain this upbeat mood; it definitely depends entirely on literary magazine editors withholding rejection letters until the new year, I mean it is the holidays. Acceptance letters are always welcome. My short story may need a Christmas miracle, the plot is a bit bleak (my friend says it would bring D.H. Lawrence to tears), but I believe in it – more than anything I’ve written so far.
I promise to return in January with new posts. Until then I have last minute holiday gift ideas.

Read the rest of this entry »

Ali Smith Discussion: Public Library and other stories

IMG_0486

Her book is everywhere including The NT Bookshop

I wasn’t planning on writing a post this early. In fact I’m still overjoyed that I met Ali Smith. She’s brilliant and really lovely too. I almost didn’t make it to the event. At 17:00 I was stuck in a cab on Jamaica Road telling my driver that I rearranged my entire trip just to come to this event. He becomes quite determined and begins backing up and turns left then the driver takes an alternate route that leads us off Jamaica Road. I’m not familiar with South East London, but we traveled down a number of different streets just to go around the traffic jam.

When we finally reach the venue, my fare is £59 and he tells me to just forget it, to go inside and get my book signed. He’s the kindest cab driver in the world. So I went in late, but it was a fantastic evening. I would do it all over again even if there were only ten minutes of discussion, although it was much longer. Smith discussed her new collection of stories and who influenced them. There were readings from her book. If you’re local, try to get to King’s College London: Inventing the modern novel on November 9, 2015 (18:30-20:00). Ali Smith is thoughtful and engaging with her audience. I’d love to be able to hear how modernist literature has influenced her work, such as James Joyce and Virginia Woolf. She’s truly remarkable. I can’t wait to start reading Public Library and other stories.

Happy Birthday to Sylvia Plath

Sylvia_plath

Fever 103

Pure? What does it mean?
The tongues of hell
Are dull, dull as the triple

Tongues of dull, fat Cerberus
Who wheezes at the gate. Incapable
Of licking clean

The aguey tendon, the sin, the sin.
The tinder cries.
The indelible smell

Of a snuffed candle!
Love, love, the low smokes roll
From me like Isadora’s scarves, I’m in a fright

One scarf will catch and anchor in the wheel,
Such yellow sullen smokes
Make their own element. They will not rise,

But trundle round the globe
Choking the aged and the meek,
The weak

Hothouse baby in its crib,
The ghastly orchid
Hanging its hanging garden in the air,

Devilish leopard!
Radiation turned it white
And killed it in an hour.

Greasing the bodies of adulterers
Like Hiroshima ash and eating in.
The sin. The sin.

Darling, all night
I have been flickering, off, on, off, on.
The sheets grow heavy as a lecher’s kiss.

Three days. Three nights.
Lemon water, chicken
Water, water make me retch.

I am too pure for you or anyone.
Your body
Hurts me as the world hurts God. I am a lantern—

My head a moon
Of Japanese paper, my gold beaten skin
Infinitely delicate and infinitely expensive.

Does not my heat astound you! And my light!
All by myself I am a huge camellia
Glowing and coming and going, flush on flush.

I think I am going up,
I think I may rise —
The beads of hot metal fly, and I love, I

Am a pure acetylene
Virgin
Attended by roses,

By kisses, by cherubim,
By whatever these pink things mean!
Not you, nor him

Nor him, nor him
(My selves dissolving, old whore petticoats) —
To Paradise.

Listen to Plath read Fever 103 here.