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Aea Varfis-van Warmelo
Aea is an actor, writer and recent graduate from the University of Glasgow (Theatre Studies and English Literature) where she was a part of the undergraduate creative writing programme. She was shortlisted for the Glasgow Women’s Library Bold Types prize and her shorter pieces have been published in several journals (most recently From Glasgow to Saturn) as well as being adapted for stage.

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1 Modotti, Adrienne Rich I am struck by the line If this is where I must look for you, then this is where I’ll find you I read it several times, scrawl it on a note and stick it to the wall In the seminar that week I mention the poem but no one else has read it, so the burden falls upon me to describe it, explain (unpack, as the tutor creatively says) why it is emotionally striking, and why in particular it was so significant to me Certainly I do not mention that we are, in fact, A It is the week of epitaphs and as the dead rise I am trying to put you to rest To call you a ghost is ungenerous, it is not your fault I am haunted I have been told I can trace your face through mine and so I have sought and found you, every now and again, in the fold of my eyelids, the curl of my lip and the bump of my nose December is the cruellest month, I whisper to my room, gazing at the mirror, fingertip on nose curve I have told no one that we are rapidly approaching the fifth anniversary of your death, or that this week is hell for   anyone who has experienced grief Instead I posit (tutor’s word, not mine) that reading it-self is an act of resurrection Should we abide by the notion that the text is the vi-brant and living space between reader and writer, then of course to read an epitaph, to engage in memorial, is to summon the ghost subject and renew its life Quick note in the corner of my sheet: Write about her We progress through assigned reading, onto Walter Benjamin: The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction We take it at face value initially, discuss our thoughts on art, then eventually begin to apply it to our epitaphs The word aura gains a spectral
Ways of Reading I

Poetry

November 2018

Aea Varfis-van Warmelo


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