Alyssa Yankwitt – Four Photographs
Artist’s Statement on Beauty
the room is spinning. or you’re spinning. or everything is just a bit unsteady. and you’re thinking about beauty. so you drink tea (hoping for inspiration, divination) and think the meds are supposed to make you feel better until you realize it’s not the room spinning, or you spinning or that all external is unsteady. you realize that it’s your head: spinning, dizzy, unsteady. and you have what the dr. calls viral labyrinthitis which, through six degrees of the disco king, makes you feel a little bit better. you think: i have a david bowie virus. find some comfort in that (you still miss the starman), but all the things are still moving; you are still thinking about beauty, keep coming back to john berger (our faces & my heart really are brief as photos), keep rereading how we are storytellers, how “lying on our backs, we look up at the night sky” and that “the constellations did not of course change the stars, nor did it change the black emptiness that surrounds them. what changed was the way people read the night sky.” you wonder about how you read the night sky (as you would tea leaves?). wonder how to decipher constellations (stars shining like shattered glass on asphalt because that which is broken is sometimes most beautiful). and there it is: the beauty. it is not in the spinning, dizzying maze; the tea leaves are ineffectual against ephemera (everything lives in fragments). but there it is: the beauty. the beauty, which is seldom found in the translation, but rather in the wanting to know how.
Alyssa Yankwitt is a poet, photographer, teacher, bartender, documenter, and earth walker. Her poems and photographs have previously appeared in Yellow Chair Review, Blacktop Passages, Alyss, Up the Staircase Quarterly, Spry Literary Journal and Gargoyle. Alyssa has incurable wanderlust, enjoys drinking whiskey, hates writing about herself in third person, and loves a good disaster. More at: Facebook.