Monday 12th May 2014

Text: … the keys I’ve hoarded …
When I visited HOARD recently the project’s curator, Sarah Francis, mentioned that she had bought a bag containing around 3,000 key rings. I was struck by this image and wanted to use it as the starting point for my first experimental text on this blog. The finished work, below, is a 272 word sentence that doesn’t begin and doesn’t end.
only I can’t now find my key, even though it is on its key ring, and even though I’ve hung this key ring on the key board by my door, where I’ve always hung all of my key rings, so I now can’t lock or unlock the lock, and so I’ll have to ring when I return, ring, ring, ring, three rings, three thousand key rings on the key board, each on its own peg, precisely placed, or so I thought, and each with its own key, three thousand keys, keys for who knows what locks, the keys I’ve hoarded, the keys I’ve suspended on my key board, suspended between usefulness and uselessness, the keys suspended like metaphors, and I can’t now translate this act of suspension, this work of consciousness, because I can’t find the key, the key that will unlock it, like the key that unlocks the work of art, I can’t find the key that will unlock these symbols, this gesture, this act of suspension, the key that will tell me how to make sense of these things, this hoard, how to read it and interpret it, and so until I find it and try it in the lock, the work itself, the symbol, the gesture, will remain suspended between meaning and meaninglessness, and I cannot even tell whether it is a roman-à-clef, a story with a key which, once turned, will reveal the person behind each character, and so those figures must remain mysterious, and I cannot unlock the meaning of them all, nor of this hoard, I mean I would, only I can’t now find my key
by James Holden
© James Holden 2014

Posted on May 12th 2014 on 10:06am


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