Susan Mackin-Dolan, Beckian Fritz Goldberg
Blossom at the End of the Body
accordian book of etching
and handmade paper
(kozo, gampi, natural pigments)
9" x 6" x 40" opened

Blossom at the End of the Body

Leaving this world must be the flower,
Its three violet faces turned to the air-
A man can’t look at a flower without knowing he’s dying.
That’s the beauty.
Parting must be this little chance, with its stem and flutter.
It’s no god and it’s no force and our grief is a rock, a clod, a punk of earth.
Truth is, what we will miss most isn’t
her or him or mother or child but
the particular blue at the side of the field,
the heart’s pure botany, for the body is a science.
And there is no substitute for
thing.  Not love, not happiness, not faith.
But flower.           But flower.                But flower.


            --Beckian Fritz Goldberg
                                                               COLLABORATIVE STATEMENT
                                         Artist Susan Mackin-Dolan and Poet Beckian Fritz Goldberg

Mackin-Dolan started by reading Goldberg's books of poetry, and responded with the idea of an
accordion book format with a poem printed horizontally for the finished piece. Goldberg immediately
responded to the imagery of Susan’s work, particularly her work with natural materials and her idea of
an accordion book format. The poem
"Blossom...." was chosen, representing an experience each had
both recently been through -the death of a parent.

Mackin-Dolan decided she needed to make a special paper for the book and took cues from lines in the
book as to material & color (clod, punk of earth) to inspire her use of the arid southwest earth colors for
the paper. Her paper is also made from natural materials (bark fibers & dead lily leaves) The long
shape of the paper became a silhouette of a reclining body on its side. When the paper is folded into an
accordion book and viewed from the cover page, it appears to be mountains one behind the other in a
landscape. The front title page is the title of the poem/art piece and has the shape and font style of a
grave marker.

Poet and artist discussed and looked at different fonts and where the words would be printed, (and
decided on the bottom of each page to suggest grounding), and how the poem would be pulled apart to
go horizontally across the outstretched book.  Their dialogue resulted in the present work in which both
text and image are inseparable.