JESSICA BARDSLEY

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A Past of Plank and Nail

6 min, 4:3, color, sound, 16mm on DV, 2013

A Past of Plank and Nail depicts poet Emily Dickinson’s Massachusetts home, now preserved as a museum. Images of household furniture, familial ephemera, Dickinson’s famed white dress, and the house’s worn walls evoke a presence, an audible spectre that still lingers.

(729)

BY EMILY DICKINSON

The Props assist the House
Until the House is built
And then the Props withdraw
And adequate, erect,
The House support itself
And cease to recollect
The Augur and the Carpenter —
Just such a retrospect
Hath the perfected Life —
A Past of Plank and Nail
And slowness — then the scaffolds drop
Affirming it a Soul

 

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