Search results for: "kerfe roig"

Roig1
Unmasking
by Kerfe Roig

What looks back? An outline, an ear, a nose? Where is the mouth? Emotions ride the eyes in waves over the barrier between inside and out.
reaching
to balance
breath with invisibility
The atmosphere is unsettled. Who (e)merges, from and with, behind, between?
This face: who does it belong to? It appears liquid, fractured like a mirrored jewel, shimmering with unnamable currents, transformed by filtered light. Both distorted and reflected.
disembodied words
search for certainty—was it
ever really there?

Roig 2

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: When I look in the mirror to adjust my mask, I barely recognize my face, especially with my sweatshirt hood pulled up. And it feels strange to go outside among mostly masked people who avoid even looking at each other as they hurry past. My first forays out were always in drizzle or right after it had rained. The face in puddles was even more alien than that of the one in the mirror.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kerfe Roig lives and works in New York City, where she plays with images and words and blogs about it at kblog.blog.

Illustrations by the author. 

Roig_front door
Thresholds
by Kerfe Roig

I have known
so many doorways–
ideas
of home–so
many entrances always
followed by exits,
portals to
moving on. They say
each door is
renewal,
a fresh start, but I long for
extended middles,
openings
that tell me to stay.
Here I am,
sequestered
still behind one of hundreds
of plain white metal
rectangles
along corridors
guarded by
multiple
locks. The world comes in through my
window—subways, sea
gulls calling
and Venus and the
moon fading
into dawn.
The playground below listens:
abandoned, forlorn.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: Having just moved (again), the familiarity of my world has been entirely upended.  I feel lucky that I am able to turn to creating words and images to ease the unknowns of my enforced solitude.

Roig_portrait

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kerfe Roig currently lives behind the door of her thirteenth residence since arriving in New York City at age 19.  She hopes to move one final time, a goal currently derailed by the uncertainty of the times.  She likes to play with words and images and sends them out to the world at kblog.blog.

Roig
What Was Lost
by Kerfe Roig

A taxi,
a wallet:
what was really lost?
No comfort
in this return. Forever
unfillable. Gone.

IMAGE:  Collage by Kerfe Roig.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: When I got into the back seat of a taxi several years ago, there was a wallet on the floor. I located the owner through the phone number of a friend that was inside. It was a somber face that met me when I went to her apartment building to return the lost property: she had been taking her dog to the vet for the last time.

Roig_portrait

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kerfe Roig enjoys transforming words and images into something new. You can follow her explorations on the blog she does with her friend Nina: methodtwomadness.wordpress.com. 

Self-portrait by Kerfe Roig. 

roig
1969
by Kerfe Roig

My only thought what
I was not. Uninvited.
Unrequited. But

Beautiful feeling
The Age of Aquarius
New day is coming

These new voices gave
more choices: one of many
singing harmony.

What am I to do?
Time to sit down and wonder
Better get ready

With guitar and Hair
going where an opening
mind left fear behind.

SONGS FROM 1969 BILLBOARD TOP 100 REFERENCED IN THE POEM:
“Crimson and Clover,” “Aquarius,” “Crystal Blue Persuasion,” “Going in Circles,” and “Too Busy Thinking About My Baby.”

IMAGE: Psychedelic self-portrait by Kerfe Roig.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: At 17, I was lost, a bundle of insecurities. The music of that tumultuous year, 1969, helped me to find a place to belong both with my peers and in the world, while at the same time opening my thinking to new possibilities.

roig_portrait

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Kerfe Roig
enjoys transforming words and images into something new. Follow her explorations on the blog she does with her friend Nina: methodtwomadness.wordpress.com.

AUTHOR IMAGE: Self-portrait by Kerfe Roig.

roig_straw-hat-illustration

Straw Hat
by Kerfe Roig

I don’t remember
why I bought it. A straw hat.
I painted myself
wearing it: young, jaunty, full
of optimism. Moving
on to other dreams
beyond, past the unrealized,
I lost that self. My
self in that moment, that hat,
in that portrait. Who I was.
And now I draw on
memory. An inexact
rendering of time,
the intersection of lines
reaching forward and then back.

IMAGE: “Straw Hat,” self-portrait by Kerfe Roig.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I’m working on 100 self-portraits inspired by other artists. This block print was based on a print by Vanessa Bell. When I saw her image, I immediately thought of the now-lost self-portrait I had painted in my twenties, a young woman in her straw hat. I tried to reproduce the feeling of it that remained in my mind, now wearing the hat on my present, much older, face.

roig_self-portrait

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kerfe Roig enjoys transforming words and images into something new. Follow her explorations on the blog she does with her friend Nina: methodtwomadness.wordpress.com.

AUTHOR IMAGE: “Self-portrait” by Kerfe Roig.

roig-crow-flying

If I flew (for Joni Mitchell)
by Kerfe Roig

If I flew,
black, a silhouette
against blue,
would I see
outlines of me, abandoned
to endless highways?

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I’ve been working on a series of monoprints with collage and stitching.“there’s a crow flying” is inspired by Joni Mitchell’s song “Black Crow.” The poem, also, considers her song.

roig_-portrait

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kerfe Roig enjoys transforming words and images into something new. You can follow her explorations on the blog she does with her friend Nina: methodtwomadness.wordpress.com.

Self-portrait by the author. 

roig_move
Be It Ever So Humble
by Kerfe Roig

No house is home I won’t be
hanging my hat it
will remain in hand ever
ready or tossed so
casually waiting humble
on boxes right there
boxes piled between what is
temporary no
more than just a resting place
a stop that looks like
moving day no house is home

IMAGE: “Move,” collage by Kerfe Roig.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: Currently living in my 18th residence, I still have unpacked boxes, and boxes in storage, from the last move. Most of my moves have been as an adult, within New York City, so although the particular address changes, and the unpacking is always uncompleted, the city itself feels very much like home.
If you look at the last word of each line, you will see that I created my shovel poem with the sentence “be it ever so humble there is no place like home”.

roig_portrait

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Kerfe Roig
enjoys transforming words and images into something new. Follow her explorations on the blog she does with her friend Nina: methodtwomadness.wordpress.com.

Self-portrait by Kerfe Roig. 

Roig_beach illustration.jpg

into the spiral
by Kerfe Roig

shells singing
whispered memories
returning
calling me
I fall into the spiral
drifting with the tide

DRAWING: “Beach” by Kerfe Roig.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: Weeks at the beach include longs walks with a bucket for shells or other gifts from the sea. I also take my sketchbook down to the beach and draw. Both the shells and the drawings help me keep the magic of the ocean in the city when I return home.

Roig_portrait

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kerfe Roig enjoys transforming words and images into something new. You can follow her explorations on the blog she does with her friend Nina: methodtwomadness.wordpress.com.

Author portrait by Kerfe Roig. 

roig_illustration
Face in the Mirror
by Kerfe Roig

I
had long
beautiful
hair. Straight. Waist-length.
What was I thinking?
I was thinking: Change. New.
Reinvention. I thought: Bold.
Happy. Admiration. Envy.
Compliments and An Exciting Life.
Blame it on Charley’s Angels. Blame it
on Carly, Fashion, Photographs
in Magazines, Vanity…
But wait—didn’t I feel
uncomfortable,
didn’t I know?
That mirror
was not
me.

Illustration by the author, with a nod to Man Ray

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: In the 1970s, a graduate of fashion school and working in the fashion industry, I decided I needed a makeover. So I cut the long straight hair that remained from my hippie days and embarked on a series of permanents. It didn’t take too long for me to realize that the hair I was born with suited me best, and it has remained straight ever since.

roig_photo

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kerfe Roig enjoys transforming words and images (but no longer her hair) into something new. You can follow her explorations on the blog she does with her friend Nina at methodtwomadness.wordpress.com.

AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION: Taken at work during the 1970s.

Roig

Translation (for Montserrat Roig)
by Kerfe Roig

Translations are necessary.
The blood begins in Catalan.
Roig becomes rojo becomes red.
You knew these three songs of the tongue.
You knew about women. You knew
translations are necessary
between silenced lives of women
and loud words from the lives of men.
You knew relationships always
contain questions. Never simple:
translations are necessary.
The same meaning? Not exactly.
What language do I really speak?
Is it contained in the center
of the journey from roig to red?
Translations are necessary.

AUTHOR’S NOTE ON THE IMAGE: Me (left), Montserrat Roig (right), and the transition from roig to red, Catalonia to America.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: Montserrat Roig (1946-1991) was a fiction writer, essayist, TV journalist, and political activist committed to Catalan culture and feminism. She was especially interested in the generational relationships between women and the marginal nature of women’s writing. I did not become aware of the origin of my surname until adulthood. First I learned it was Spanish; later, I discovered the name was actually Catalan, filtered through Spain. Montserrat Roig lived the layers and tensions of Catalan/Spanish identity. Her novels about the lives of women intrigue me, but though she both spoke and taught in English, her work is available in the United States only in Spanish. I own a copy of L’hora Violeta. Sadly, despite my ancestry, I speak and experience life only in American English. “Translations are necessary.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kerfe Roig enjoys transforming words and images into something new. You can follow her explorations on the blog she does with her friend Nina: methodtwomadness.wordpress.com.