The memory throws up high and dry
A crowd of twisted things;
A twisted branch upon the beach
Eaten smooth, and polished
As if the world gave up
The secret of its skeleton,
Stiff and white.
A broken spring in a factory yard,
Rust that clings to the form that the strength has left
Hard and curled and ready to snap.
----T.S. Eliot, Rhapsody on a Windy Night, 1917
Objects and Apparitions---for Joseph Cornell
Monuments to every moment,
refuse of every moment, used:
cages for infinity.
Marbles, buttons, thimbles, dice,
pins, stamps, and glass beads:
tales of the time.
"Yet for better or for worse we do love things that bear the marks of grime, soot, and weather, and we love the colors and the sheen that call to mind the past that made them." ------Jun'ichiro Tanizaki, In Praise of Shadows
Collecting is a calling, not a choice. For some people, the impulse to collect takes over. The seduction of the object is too much to resist. When someone acquires their object of affection, there is a feeling of satisfaction. For me, I like anything that is worn, torn, weathered, rusty, or broken.
Signs that you are an obsessed collector:
- You will risk life and limb to collect something off of the side of a busy highway/cliff/bridge. (Well, maybe not life or limb.)
- You will sort through dirty, dusty, rusty bins/boxes/sheds.
- You constantly look down for any shiny, rusty, worn old bit on sidewalks/roads/parking lots.
- Friends/neighbors leave dead birds, animal skulls and bones on your front porch.
- You will walk a mile into a beach, load up on rocks, and walk out with sweat pouring down your face.
- You collect boxes to put your collections in.
- You have rust in your hair.
- Old junk looks like beautiful treasure to you.