BE MY GUEST is a venue for others to share their art; I assemble between creators in my sitting room. Linear time and locality are not relevant.
I learned about Gabriel Orozco mostly through the Internet.
I read stories by Alex Epstein in Hebrew.
I join them as my guests, since they both remind me of sailing in the sea and in the mind. They resonate my interest in libraries, especially the Ancient Alexandria Library.
A whale’s skeleton in the national library of Mexico, represents also the deep sea as unconscious – that meets the bottomless knowledge buries in libraries.
The Mediterranean sea between Greece and Egypt is represented using a few words by Alex Epstein. We are sailing with him and Cavafy to Ithaca.
The poem must be somewhere nearby Orozco’s library intervention- that embraces a whale, ritually drawn upon with graphite.
The Anonymous Reader by Alex Epstein
This travel story will begin in a story. At the beginning of autumn the traveler finishes assembling the time machine. Aware of the fragility of time’s texture, the only journey he makes is brief (a few hundred kilometers east, one hundred years back). The destination—Alexandria. He materializes in the city late at night. A heavy heat of mid-September. Random echoes of muffled voices are drifting from the port. Apart from a few street cats dozing on wicker chairs at the entrances of the white houses, the alleys and the boulevards—abundant with ficus trees—are empty. And the Greek poet is also asleep in his bed. The time traveler enters the house, puts on gloves, illuminates the desk with a narrow-beamed flashlight. He turns the pages carefully. He reads the last draft of the poem. Instantly he becomes the first reader of the poem, though he has read it many times in the past, which is now already the future. Once again he barely holds back his tears, and then returns to his home, a distance of one hundred years and one night from there. Before he goes up to his apartment he stands for a few moments in the street, exposed to the rain that began in his absence and now grows stronger and stronger, so fast it seems possible to recall everything that has passed vividly, at once. But apart from this nothing has changed. Nothing is changing. This is the essence of this voyage. This is the essence of Ithaca.
Translated by Becka Mara Mckay
From “Blue Has No South”, Clockroot books