PERFORM-a-TEXT: Becky Cremin writing about and around text performed and performing.

The definition of performance is ‘the action or process of performing’. Performance is an object in a state of being; it involves interaction, it involves the exchange of energy. My explorations aim to deal with examining poetic performance as a plural event which is under constant construction in:



Medusa: speaking

Medusa speaks and laughs through Helene Cixous. This is a reactionary text. It is engaging with Carla Harryman’s Adorno’s Noise. It is reacting to the concerns of a poetic practiced theory. A working through theory practically. Here it is Medusa who is concerned with finding her voices within Cixous text. Medusa speaking to find her body of text.
Medusa: speaking


By by by by my owned offering of body spoken as it is of speaking contemplate bridge of a must no way is by way by as it comes from by non by product essential production. To speak engage directly non negotiable forward pushing of rupture tearing period as lawless partnership strung up against over future tensual tense turse tursive textual providing own own own own to push harder on pen is direct birth of own penhership considerable offer wordly negating land as a herstory bodified periodically penned organed out toward the non forward non where a without reason non request To gain from present a forced speech inherent inherent inherant in her ant in her ant in her aunt in her aunt in her aunts in her auntsv in her auntxi in her aunt true in her aunt cixous in her in her in her in her in her in her from a behaviour of chorality her fem femality across her ment.

standing as I do at a platform prepared to become liminal preparation of time equats to a non sequence Рher control over against the periodical attempts of a clock is brutal. Convergence brutality of a bruised minute. She within a carriage already will not stop here a non convergence but a straight linear fielding of time outward window foregrounded a force non pass̩ decibal over shall I say sixty. Convergence a breath of veins to look up at tree to teach roots function to preserve upon a fledging greenery willing itself to remain present. Convergence non likening to a liminal on one edge faced to break Рdelineate
for delineate deliniat delinia delini delin deli del ded _ post terrant of winter
mark made



Write this facing a windowed reflection of write this as a window reflection toward outside- shifting of subject from non focus glance of recollecting non facing and inevitable must a paler convert convention
can propose to write now under non disclosed as write on window. Outside common a non general forthcoming talk of non voice an hertividual her a classification denies plural form of shared body. Undergoing a home geneous presence con alterification begin faltering stream NON NEO to place a NEO offering a non way non way to negotiate non way to pluralise NON way to define non. Way to offer me non way to say now now way to element body non way to digress across non way of her plateau non way will non way to talk non way to write non way be non way as woman way non way __write non way be non way as woman way non way


Poise not allowing for a comfort a slight
and upper. non chanced imaginary
encounters non deliverances from early
age touch was the base for cleansing as
a woman leant against green grass
blowing out breathes wind thou to.
Rest. I call it meadow from before
filted degrees apparent thant light tormel.
Will flaunt to can a memory so seemingly resuilt
in you fore presenting an isolation a fore
to dress pursed to non touch gen the
an inscribular no verbal request concerns.
O slight resting over curious at
age of self can consume a non
window facing for willing non
willing as an attempt concave
depending palm concave ever
so slight pleasant grounding eye
wider to sit as a rest is as ever a gain.
a a a vowels to form resonating
understanding stand in base of
a fledgeling glimpse of that
eye in a to task of an inked
to tilt till it
to burn over breath
concave beneath control
birthing breast purely
subtle rippling against

unfurling a width
su down a right draw
curling under between pedi
resting breathes non to plurality
boundless a rub over a
as touch pen as
folded against and resting
placement slight to frame
sea tulping after tulping
to tide venus up tied over
freedom at age in non in but
against this stretch against for non
latten against to tilt against
to touch against
to line against
to against
to against
to against


Wishing from a sovereigned goal facing
Empirical streets of women from over bountiful plains. A recircling would ask to draw in from you non negotiating but counting newness amongst friend amongst gender amongst my form Consider where internal allows for gap of a space a void to be framed filled to bursting. A seizure upon voided offering shall we consider the veil
a rustling papered body in which conjunctions thwart outwards. Pressing over and through and around a passing from anxt towards. A veiled towarding A veiled can I ask you about desire?
for a momentary relies upon veiled frames. Preparation of a veiled begins by reframing an intricate panting from breadth to re paint. non premium place – when I asked around desire please stop. Halting within a framed negotiate tempered cannot walk within I didn’t respond to your desire believing from withstanding own for fore, A
puncture within veil bleeds void onto your desire puncture of veil to bleed hair forth out write. To begin with a punctured veil insist of no desire desire desificates a non unity a puncture invent practical infinite bleeding out – a breadth _out out towards from. She veiled void consist of a pre-supposed passing counting newness amongst friend amongst gender amongst form. to bleed is unwilling is waves seeping outwards bleed is to be non accused non thought reaching beyond voided veil bleeding excess elivinity punctured veil bleeds from about punctured veiled bursted for your desire,


shouting can you walk to the edge of your room begin shout SH OUT SSH OUT SSSH OUT OUT presence secure presence of breath upon you to out. At age before considering when out will come when some will exude into multiple. At the edge of your room standing facing wall breath upon paint panting upon wall chipped out through body chipped against. Sore surface because facing because writing because it because you because you because you
To bury
To forget
To excuse
To edge
To secret
To punished
To didn’t
To irresist
To come
To go
To be
To face without excuse Attribute surface forward Standing aware of feet Facing surface To shout To sh out To ssh out to sssh out


to embrace against paged machine Forge a bearing of won page own body as machine mechanism of hand over nail towards pen Against for now economy Reason for to dwell on Reason to dwell on economy to dwell on object to dwell on for transpositional convex transvex trans vex trans sex Against for no reason but myself –female –trans –of off of off economic trans economic pre trans economic –pre your of my – facing ed I tore mechanism for chan ism.


conquering lay at plural cause for this is non play categorisation over me body for your body forward and convex for concave speaking fluidly she vexed lays seize at the sink To look passing over water refracts a “belief” lay at plural valley concave facing convex inherent void inherent waste inherent non inherent inherent in her ent in her end in her in her in her in looking Fluidity fluidity standing at the sink dailey from looking in her looking for vexed lays out convexing before her convexing out water confirms presence balanced concave she vexes concave she vexed concave she vex,


Enter the past, Large white triple doored wardrobe where legs dangle, over the bed. praying can be heard on landing. RED. fuchsias scent pale. powdered mantle boxed. beneath leg/ enter the forget. desperate to tell colour of carpet it is not heath non preserved non alive non memory non. Gapping over gap causal of condemnment. to condemn. to non memory. to dangle. frigidified.[1] non rest. fidget memoretically. fidget to find – non locality powdered fidgeting legs pale. dangle. where doored praying the mantle can. white fuchsias beneath boxed leg. triple on landing. RED. bed be heard large wardrobe scent/ enter the forget.


Lowered perspectives as legs dangle a road a green penetrable elipsed steps behind echoe forward now. Confined. Dangling between internal knees resting upwards torch penning to the right. darkened responsively
loss can cause and inflict
lack of being lack of
to know being lack of
placement to
because am in room am in room am in room. Because he is in woman he is in woman he is woman.


Convex remains eyes at point stress looking. Lacausal can strike logic. Looking strike anti-looker. To strike away strike and remove strike a look put on lipstick and strike upon him remain eyes lashes at point of looking strike to past anti and remain mirrored graciously to strike lashed and lipped


Mouthes lined thick culturally
Becoming non voided image
Painterdly licking coloured lips
coloured and activates mouths


Poreal breaking at the introduction signals resurrecting welcome system gesture praying outwardly to transcribe over it transcription of corporeal to begin mirrored introductions. Extending. Yes.


unification presumes a unit
of whom you I they we are
units from to in at of
unitary in wholeness of time


This in present. decidedly questioned?
Unit as solidity


In early voice heard. Aired banded of her and this new. Pleasant from one to this now. Rooted voiced in linearity. Must early voice left for this now. Echo upon hills from this now.


Returning to shelves. The fact can often be clearer from a fas. Returning to shelveds. The fact can often be inscribed from a far. Returning to shelf The fact can data be and this if not a
and when not
and certainly not
and why not
and what not
and she not
and fact not
and she fact not


Let you insert here. a parent remark

[for my marked gains political social and economic frustrates area, For admittance takes below For land plateaued is resting For marks made must bury]




lying non now non now pushing a breath on a page to sweep over and against and deepened it with a code. of lined against lined scented traditional non rushing if you could see look at them eyes her bring it on a gallop a lunged noise a rooted vein. pulsing. Inner ear he would say thru is the rub as she rubs she rubs he there to her Lying trough on and around papered over with body against non tell wired from within for her lunged down tilting. tilting. papered tilt lined against forefinger penned for rub non negotiate with her penned story.


Believe. as one does not deathed.


Pooled between remain separated. To create present. To presume. Convex. Multiple.
-- dangled and lurid the between convex and concave liminality attains and utters its growth. A cattled being, woman. seeks to turn from without itself. immensively cattled tapped by inability to hear a called from a fear but to call the liminal non. Fielded and grazing considered there a dangled place but to become to hear to write calls upon and toward breaths sourced to tear away thwarted
without itself. Risk of a push pull relationship offer non resolve non restolution –
the digression of rest locates her breath in a non place. Sonically vacuumed a direct pushing communicates the uncodable between. To rid the between is to buy place the culling of the liminal; a begin of Her
flawed we beg in Her.
= sitting hands under thighs a sitting to listen a sitting to listen a sitting beginning to a sitting biting of lip A sitting aware of temperature A sitting looking down a sitting raised shoulders a sitting heavy feet a sitting dry mouth a sitting a sitting willing TO BE OPEN MOUTHED VOICE OF STRAIGHT TONE AN EVENT ABLE and then hands actively
raised and forceful anti silence words spill for you must work catch loud the voice asks to lie between body and mine. Waging an occasion of speech beyond. For liminality is broken in the live. The presence forces plurality. The presence of heard voice forces body upon body upon body upon body upon body upon body upon body upon


Once governed as a hunted voice to now hunt out a silence Resembling governed can we come to the edge of border. Resting place. from. around. through. reserving place over order.


Utterances public utterances lay bare. utter an she says. From behind table. Drawing on body. Shall I listen to the entire list. Bodily. Duggest. Calm. TILT. Forward becoming traceable. Utter on she says utter pursed the rub of public lips shall listen. Public in a tilt shift to trace in aired voice.


page pressing face facing pressed page. Two feet facing away pulling between tonsil to toe chords tighten forming distress – paged stress.

dangling between tonsils between wombed. A pilling of device internal rebuilt of text la langue dangling between in from her role as child to role upon age to dangle a front to flood. Between body to tilt slight tense up piling devisal convexing salivating paged to breath through page.


Sourced. A running tongue over teeth convexically lexical for to mean between place. stand. Body against body for can we define. Hovering over to flutter up through. seemingly eyed she it rests upon (body) or (bodies) it rests in ( ) and ( ) with (body) is all which leaves space in ( ) is a don’t not don’t make.


Drives from momentary values. This radical will might over. She system bases seizes reactionary.



[1] placement causal breaks mematic memory. banish may be strong usurped at a bodily youth placement breaks memory. memory breaks placement


Examining: Carla Harryman’s Adorno’s Noise

Carla Harryman’s Adorno’s Noise is a self structured work which reaches out towards worlds of language, dialectics, art, sexuality, memory, politics, poetry, writing, the self, the object, space and Adorno. Carla Harryman plunges us into her minds eye- into her world which is a complex object fighting for its place in the world. Adorno’s Noise is a complex work, which aims to challenge. Like the Harryman work which has gone before it, this new example of her writing does not shy away from complexity of thought or process. This complexity makes this work initially daunting to engage with; this feeling of daunting is not a negative one, but one which spurs the reader on to uncover the meaning of the text. The text is a noise; a hybrid of hisses and spits from across genres. Harryman plunges us directly into this noise; a noise we are unfamiliar with, a noise which is forcing us to listen, a noise which is asking for change.
There is a need to uncover what this noise means; you must be willing to translate it. Carla Harryman demands that you listen and listen with intent. This text demands that you listen and listen throughout. Yet what are the implications of this intent listening and is it possible? Has Harryman constructed a dense enough text to be physically deconstructing itself?
I must firstly turn our attention to the title: “Adorno’s Noise”. There are instant connotations of thought here and from the beginning Harryman has set up a very open dialogue with Adorno’s work. Yet will this book be just that; noise from Adorno? I must admit that this text is noise, but it is certainly not purely Adorno, it is very much saturated with the voice of Harryman.
Adorno’s Noise is a melting pot of thought and dwells on and samples from one of Adorno’s key texts; Minima Moralia: Reflections from Damaged Life. Adorno’s text is similar to Harryman's in that they both draw on a wealth of experience and offer a critical and political journey for the reader. Adorno’s text dwells on a damaged life; it is posing the possibility of teaching a “good life”. I will not dwell on Minima Moralia, but feel it is important to foreground any thoughts on Harryman’s text by taking a little time to look at what is causing her noise.
Minima Moralia is a dense text posing difficult questions of life, politics and place, which remain questions to be considered today. It is this questioning which I think is of great significance. I want then to open my discussion of Harryman’s text with these words from Adorno;

Today self consciousness no longer means anything but reflection on the ego as
embarrassment, as realisation of impotence: knowing that one is nothing.

In many people it is already an impertinence to say

The splinter in your eye is the best magnifying glass.[1]

Reflection on the ego is a laughable offence; the “I” is an irrelevant, there is an instant image of the “I” being “splintered”; it is being obliterated. Adorno poses many questions in his text, but this is one which is key to understanding and engaging with Harryman’s text and the use of voice within her work. We must remember then that Harryman’s noise is one where the “I” has been splintered and is still shattering.
The “I” as I see it is not only author and reader, but object and the object which Carla Harryman has created is one of great pleasure. The object itself is a magnified and splintered experience. If we consider firstly its visual form, it a flickering sign system which we the reader must negotiate. Adorno’s Noise is physical, it is blacked out pages/ lists/ inversions/ mirrors/ repetitions/ bolds/ narratives/ spaces/ italics/ bullets/ questions/ non narratives/ statements/ scores/ notes. It is noise; a visual and textual noise. Harryman by doing this is offering an essay which is a series of processes, each given its own space to exist. This space is important to recognise as it is these spaces or voids which offer the reader rest, and allow us to see how all of these different experiences can co-exist to form the basis for this one essay. Using these methods Harryman also suggests that text is image and this impacts how we negotiate this text which has now become; object.
In terms of the visual Harryman has created an oscillating essay, which does not stray too far from the rules, but just far enough to make it difficult and uneasy to negotiate. It is this negotiation of the text which I think makes this work such a success. We the reader must find our own strategy of listening in order to make this a personal reading experience. The text demands interaction and a sense of play from the reader and it is this sense of play which is key to the shattering of the “I” in the object. It is this sense of play which immediately notifies the reader that we are entering a very physical reading experience where definition is elusive. Harryman is offering up a space where the commodity of the very object we hold is being torn apart; it is being “magnified” and “splintered” using the techniques of Adorno.
This visual quality is directly reflected in the content of Adorno’s Noise. It is divided into a series of viewing chapters, Harryman is constantly shifting her focus; sections jump into the next as we are led through a language which moves from tones of the personal, to theoretical, to poetic, through sampled texts. Harryman has created a text which is lived in, this noise is a hybrid soundscape, yet it oscillates and changes in pitch, pace and volume. It is a consuming experience. This oscillating quality allows Harryman to maintain a distance with the object as it shifts and eludes definition.
In writing a poem she is not writing a novel in writing a novel she is not
writing an essay in writing an essay she is not writing a diatribe in writing a
diatribe she is not putting her body on the line in putting her body on the line
she is not going to jail in going to jail she is not getting a job in getting a
job she is not protesting in protesting she is not elucidating her point of view
in elucidating her point of view she is not writing a poem.[2]

We see Harryman define through the negative; what a poem is not, what she is not, what the reader is not. This attempted definition is important to recognise when we are dealing with a text which is eluding its own definition as object; this text is not a poem, it is not a theory, it is not an essay. Harryman plays with this repetition of image to create and build a series of differences, there is an ebb and flow of what this text could be. Deconstruction of the “I” is constantly occurring here. Yet Harryman pushes this deconstruction further by putting the body of her text on the line. Adorno writes that ‘the whole is the false’[3], and we see this at work in Adorno’s Noise. The labour of listening forces us to watch Harryman write, the negative constructs the positive and this chapter is an example of how she constructs a text. These shifts in definitions are not unfamiliar to Harryman; it is what I find pleasing in her work.

This idea of shifting definition is found throughout Harryman’s texts, yet what is most interesting is that Harryman focuses on trying to find definition within a text which is eluding it. It is these slippages which make Adorno’s Noise relevant to contemporary poets of today. Her language is not only pushing against definition, but she points at the idea of defining ‘the object’ with severity; it is under attack.


In her chapter “Just Noise” Harryman presents us with a list of names that include: Elizabeth Grosz, Kathy Acker and Jackson Maclow, attached to each is a weighty footnote. These footnotes are then removed from context and placed as text in the “Reprise”. The object of the footnote is being shifted; it is being communicated. This act of communication takes place by the careful placement and repetition of phrase. This labour of repetition is clearly of interest to Harryman and forms a key aspect of her writing process. By moving language its status as object is altered and this action leads to a new informed act of communication. The most important aspect of this action is that it shows that Harryman’s form is her content; the building blocks of language are exposed and re-addressed. Harryman’s building blocks of language are moved and re-moved. Adorno’s Noise is not only in dialogue with critical thought, but critical thought is being performed for us.

This labour of writing is paralleled in our labour of reading. Harryman in her performance texts sets about constructing a laboured reading experience, by laboured I mean that we work through the text, building it as we go. Harryman opens up the possibility of writing as not only a way of communicating ideas but a process of actions. Harryman is Brechtian in her positioning; she exposes the process of thought in this work. We know that objects for Harryman are not mere entities but essential constructs surrounding us. It is important to consider their status and Harryman exposes the status of the theoretical text, the personal text and the poetic text by not only placing these all side by side, but intertwining them. The labour of finding the stitches in this work is that of the reader if we choose to look for them. These stitches are well hidden, yet we know they remain and hold this network of texts together. The object of language is being exploded here and we must explode our views with it.

I ask us now to move from thinking about language in Adorno’s Noise to thinking about the reading of this text. Contemporary poetics concerns itself with how we read and there is something concrete about Harryman’s text; it is a mix of solid objects who seamlessly merge. Yet each chapter offers a shift and addresses a newness, they are all underpinned by our reading experience and the way Harryman not only gets us to read, but listen. Adorno’s Noise is a talking text which we engage with physically, temporally and emotionally. It is a space which asks us to consider our reactions and interactions as a reader and questions the very object of text.

This question continues throughout the piece and we are encouraged as readers to move through the text;

The preference is to move through the confrontation. This is executed. The
confrontation, which has tilted upward right in front of the noses passes into
the mimetic as it, mimesis, it passed through.[5]

A passing through of thought. Harryman offers an image of this noise passing through the body. She is offering ideas oh how reader should respond bodily to a critical text. Critical writing should be passed through, should be engaged with and be engaging. It speaks to a newness and a contemporary theoretical thought process. We pass through Adorno’s Noise until we reach a crescendo of noise, an “orgasm” fuelled by a poetic energy. Throughout this text Harryman sets up expectation, an expectation that this orgasm of sound will occur. Yet we are constantly assaulted by lack and ever eluding definition of what this text is. This lack is culled by the onset of Harryman’s orgasmic voice. This purely physical end to Adorno’s Noise is a climax to the readers’ very active and participatory reading; Harryman fills our lack not with definition but with hope that this text is allowed to exist.

In Adorno’s Noise, Harryman has constructed not only a text, but a temporal space to examine and form a dialogue between critical theory, poetry, spatiality and performance of object and text. This text is a performing text as we do not only read it, but listen to it and it is this listening which fills the voids of reading. Adorno’s Noise is a collage of experience and is a space where the text within is allowed to battle internally with itself and externally with the reader.

It is the battle for definition which is this text’s strength. Harryman’s work must be considered as poetic, as theory and as performing textual object. It is not a book which will sit comfortably on a shelf; it will whisper out at you and keep constructing new noise. It is this constant capacity to communicate anew which makes this text an important one to be considered in the light of contemporary theory. Adorno’s Noise is at play with itself and those texts it is in dialogue with; it floats happily between genres.

The noise of this text will continue and oscillate through more texts. As a piece of contemporary theory it challenges its very genre and asks its readers to consider the advantage of a space which is still defining itself. It is a text which will not be “ensnared”.

[1] Minima Moralia: Reflections from Damaged Life, Theodor Adorno, trans. E. F. N. Jephcott, Verso, (London, 1978), pg 50

[2] Adorno’s Noise, Carla Harryman, Essay Press, (Ohio, 2008) pg 89
[3] Minima Moralia: Reflections from Damaged Life, Theodor Adorno, trans. E. F. N. Jephcott, Verso, (London, 1978), pg 50

[4] Adorno’s Noise, Carla Harryman, Essay Press, (Ohio, 2008) pg 20.
[5] Adorno’s Noise, Carla Harryman, Essay Press, (Ohio, 2008) pg 7.

Abstraction: Abstracting

Investigating Contemporary Performance Poetic Practices

The definition of performance is ‘the action or process of performing’[1]. Performance is an object in a state of being; it involves interaction, it involves the exchange of energy. My explorations aim to deal with examining poetic performance as a plural event which is under constant construction in:

The binaries of these terms and their materialities will be explored to create a practice which aligns these terms and traces their co-dependence. I am interested in the dialogue and status of these poetic materialities; where text becomes performance, where action becomes poetic, where documentation is poem, where performance is poetry, where writing is performance.
These investigations will be framed by avant garde poets and performers who challenge the materiality of the poem. My investigation will focus on and form a dialogue with the rules and restraints of the Language poets, experimental women poets such as Caroline Bergvall, Fiona Templeton, Redell Olsen and Carla Harryman as well as female performance artists to include Carolee Scheeman, Kathy Acker, Eleanor Antin and Marina Abramovic. I will draw on their traditions and those of fluxus, site specific performance and technology to establish a focussed practice which looks to be performed and performing.
Materiality is at the forefront of this investigation and I intend to engage practically with spatiality and the female body in performance. My spatial critical argument will be framed by Robert Smithson, Nick Kay, Philip Auslander, Henri Lefebvre, Gustave Bachelard and Elizabeth Grosz. My focus practically is on experimental female poets and artists and theoretically the work of Rachel Blau Duplessis is at the forefront of finding a practised space which is available for female production. A space which works to create its own feminist language of performance. A space which is performed and performing.

[1] The Oxford English Dictionary, ed. Catherine Soanes, (Oxford: Oxford university Press, 2000)