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Julia Breckenreid
February 2012
Water & Sand, The Winter Vault
posted:
… To Egypt

_____

 

page 168 to 169

 

 

- It is not the heat, the doctor in the camp told Jean several days later. Sometimes, something goes wrong and the baby is not meant to be born. That is all. 

 

Some mothers say they feel the exact moment the child stops living. Some sense something wrong, or dream of death without knowing why; others notice only later, when the movement stops - although even this is only a feeling, for when the baby is this large, it no longer has any room anyway to move in the womb.

 

There is no safe way to induce the birth. It is best to let the body make its own decision, though this is a danger if labour waits too long. You may have to carry the still-baby for some weeks, perhaps even as long as a month.

 

Avery put his hand on her taut skin where he had felt movement for so many weeks and now felt nothing. 

 

- Sometimes, the doctor said, it is simply not meant to be.

 

Avery could not help himself thinking: All the water inside her and our dead child.

 

- It is time to go to Cairo, the doctor said.

 

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

 

The young Nubian woman who had offered to bless the child in the Nile dipped palm leaves in river water and wrapped the cool greenness over Jean's distended belly. The leaves drew the heat from her skin. Again and again the woman did this for her, until Jean fell asleep.

 

No need of a translator between the two women now.

 

_____

 

page 173

 

For months after birth, a child remains in the mother's body; moon and tide. Before the child cries, the mother flashes wet with milk. Before the child wakes and cries in the night, the mother wakes. Deep in the child's cranial vault, the mother's gaze knits up the dangling synapses.

 

And when the child is spirit, it is exactly the same.

 

(Click to see a previous post about my Winter Vault images)

Pink Horse
posted:
Charles Dickens
posted:
They said: 
There are 2 new books out about Charles Dickens. He was a bit of a rock star - popular, knew a lot of people, still has a good following. 
(I do love painting people, doing portraits, so was keen.)
 
 
 
We are looking for something like your "Talking With Dorothy" black and white style.
Perhaps Dickens surrounded by a group of people or in the middle of a London crowd...
In the rough stage, I always like to give my own take... In the middle above, I thought it might be interesting to show him between two shop windows, the reflections relating to the two books coming out, like two versions of him. They still wanted the crowd - ah well, you've always got to give it a shot!
(Did I mention that I am not a fan of doing crowd scenes? And on a quick turnaround especially? Well, the above right is my answer to a crowd - this way I was still able to have you still see Dickens somewhat largely and give the impression that there are many surrounding him.)
Here's the final:
This job was for Suzette Moyer and Jennifer DeCamp at The Tampa Bay Times - a full broadsheet cover for the travel/literature/arts Sunday section called Latitudes. Nice working with you both!
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Breckenreid is teaching at TutorMill, an online mentoring site for students of illustration!