‘Permission to write’: Emilie Collyer Interviews Marion May Campbell

By and | 31 October 2021

Later, as I write up the interview, I am also musing on a recent episode of a podcast I listen to, about re-watchable movies. This week’s episode is about Terminator 2 and how the Linda Hamilton character who tries to warn people of the dangers of SkyNet, by today’s standards, could be characterised as a conspiracy theorist.

The AI transcript of the interview translates the word ‘jigsaw’ (in regards to a feminist writing technique) as Dick’s sore. I contemplate the intelligence of this error.

Am I Q?

Long road drive and I’m
thinking about

	Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2
	predicting the end of times
	from her insane asylum

we wanted fragments

	Cixous and Kristeva
	language shatterers

	every mosaic tiny
	mirror small life
	poetry bursting 
	from feminism’s bosom

we got them

	like the glass they make windscreens
	out of this shattering into dust sand

needle hovering at a hundred clicks
adrenaline rush change lanes 

to get out 
	of the way 
it isn’t always
	a guy in a white ute

[always try to think maybe 
they are having just one bad day]

	sometimes I’ve been the arsehole
	in the rear-view mirror just a bit too close		

after all who was 
‘Anon’ for
all those years?

	the theory doesn’t hold I know
	a chasm between seeing the rot

and using poison
to fix it

	[don’t worry there are no reds under this]

but the cracks pry open 
	like the liquid cop her predator

	who can melt and reform 
	slip through any

a shape shifter
chimera enough to shimmer vision

	we wanted fragments
	the narrative myth to explode

once it shatters
how to gather 

	or does it just keep slipping
	glass dust through fingers

settling on corneas
nestling into lungs
do the microscopic shards threaten 

to infect
the layers
beneath		the skin

I am trying to express that which wants to be expressed in the form of a poem. Dissatisfied. I will come back to it. The project is about failure after all. Consider whether these segments, the critic, should be in second person.

There is something here. Is there something here? The feminist emphasis on deconstructing singular narratives, embracing multiplicity and fragmentation. Listening to the news story about QAnon I was struck by language about the movement’s desire to question authority and resist dominant narratives. A shock of winter air through the car vents. But the feminist resistance and fragmentation is … good and the QAnon version is … bad? Jigsaw. Dick’s sore. I struggle to articulate this argument with myself. And so, the poem. As I piece together the interview and try to make a small story about the day. As I select fragments, curate them, and put them together.

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