Monthly Archives: August 2011

Tower of Babel

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Tower of Babel by Shoshana Sarah

My Tower of Babel

So…I am obsessed with the Tower of Babel. I’m not 100% sure why although it’s clear to me that this obsession relates to my love of languages. But it’s not just the love of speaking languages or even hearing them, but just seeing the text of another language sends me into an irrationally ecstatic frenzy. I get giddy. Seriously, I do.

I bought a poster of the Tower of Babel. Once, I took my daughters to the museum for kids day, the day the subject was the Tower of Babel, of course, and then took over one of their projects (hey, she let me!). Then I decided that I wanted to imitate that project in a collage. The product is what you see here.

I started off with two A4 papers that I taped together. I drew out the framework of where I wanted things to be. Then I started cutting…it started out normal enough, pictures of skies for the sky (the cool clouds near the top are pics from Hubble)…but this was my first *pre-meditated* collage. Hence, the obsession reached a new level.

I would laugh like a mad scientist when I’d found a new scrap of language to add like finding an marvelous, not so decomposed ear for my Frankenstein. I would snatch papers from the street (one man’s trash became my treasure), take flyers that were clearly not meant for me from the post office, and hunted down as many languages as I could ‘naturally’ get my hands on like a cold-blooded killer.

Ok, maybe I’m taking this a bit too far.

I started with the old yellowed paper at the bottom which I knew- the moment I saw it discarded on the street- would be the ‘sand’ and the first part of the collage. The sky was the easy part (the moon took a while to find). I wanted the languages I found to really be ‘found’- I knew I could Google whatever I wanted to but I refrained as much as possible (couldn’t resist the Sanskrit, Hindi, Celtic and Georgian though).

The collage includes: English, Russian, Hebrew, French, Spanish, Korean, Japanese, Chinese, Persian (thanks, Yuliya), Arabic, Sanskrit, Hindi, Celtic, Amharic, Ancient Hebrew, Hieroglyphics (my pride & joy), Greek, Georgian, what I am 95% sure is Thai (the post office flyer that clearly wasn’t for me) and Ancient Cuneiform(some of which I sketched on top of the collage).

There are also a variety of flags, symbols- such as the Olympics symbol and the Mayan sun and moon gods, the Hebrew name of god at the top of the tower, as well as strategically placed purposeful English phrases such as: “pillars of creation,” “mysteries of the universe,” and “he loved the people.”

I cut the palm trees outs of images of plants and wood, respectively. The camels on both sides are actually one picture. The right side is the water reflection of the left, which I thought was cool and reminiscent of a mirage. The silver windows are from cigarette packaging and the gold windows are from confiscated gold paper from a certain educational facility (*ahem*).

The icing on the cake is the sun I painted myself- I cut it out of another painting (I am forever indebted to Racheli for teaching me how to mix colors) and the REAL sand, which I shamelessly had my oldest daughter ‘misappropriate’ from the school grounds (she was quite impatient for me to use it which took me the better part of a month).

~*~*~*~

After all that, I started thinking, maybe I should have been patient. I should have researched all of the languages that have ever existed (to man’s knowledge of course) and then arranged them etymologically and chronologically from the bottom up with English at the top as the new lingua franca in one enormous, meticulously planned, ridiculously awesome Magnum Opus!!!

*sigh*

So…I am obsessed with the Tower of Babel…

…I’m also obsessed with words, clocks, maps and compasses (by the way, I’m almost finished with the words collage and I’m collecting maps as we speak).

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The Sun and I

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Black Holes and Neutron Stars (Redux: NASA, Ch...

Image by NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center via Flickr

the sun burns and tear drops fall from its rays

the internal combustion that is the life of us all

constantly destroys itself and draws energy

from destruction and the contained calamity

one of these days that beautiful star is gonna burn out

one of these days he’s gonna implode and leave a big black hole

a big black hole right in the middle of the universe of his heart

where all matter will be drawn in and deconstructed

in reverse creation, the dismantling of life and love and creativity

and perhaps one particle will survive

and collide into another on its way into oblivion

and a newness of spirit will arise from the dust

I hope so, for our sakes…

for the Sun and I

He

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File:Aivazovsky - Black Sea Fleet in the Bay of Theodosia.jpg

He is the gypsy,

the pirate, the wanderer

He is the mysterious Spaniard

the arrogant Frenchman

the Tartar horseman

He is the Cherokee archer

the Mayan shaman

the Hindu priest

He is the photographer’s eye

the chef’s secret

the musician’s string

He is the desert prince

the wind of the Black Sea

the Celtic knot

He is the Greek myth

the Brazilian ganza

the artist’s heart

He is the writer’s muse

the dancer’s room

the painter’s canvas

Second Published Poem!

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The Spring 2008 issue of Tar River Poetry. Cov...

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“Dear Shoshana,

Thank you for your submission to Yes, Poetry. Yes, Poetry would like to include “No Name” in our November issue. Please reply to this message with any questions you may have. You will receive an email when the issue is online. Thank you again for submitting.

Also, feel free to friend us on facebook for updates: https://www.facebook.com/yespoetry

I’m super-excited!!

Check out Yes, Poetry (yespoetry.com). I just love the name of the journal!

Also, I know I’ve been bad at posting, but I’m trying to do something else big, soon! More news to come!

Love & Joy,

Shoshana

p.s. What do you think of my blog’s name change? It was totally spontaneous from two quotes I’ve loved for a long time…

First Published Poem!!!

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“Dear Shoshana
We’re happy to inform you that your poem, Bread, Water and Gas, has been selected for publication in the Fall 2011 edition of The Ilanot Review.”
Yay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The perfect gift for my 30th birthday this Friday!