This book is astoundingly beautiful.
Everyone has put so much care, thought, and quirkiness into their creations. I love the different textures best of all, from photo paper and cloth to crumpled paper and sequins to grainy paint and lace. I hope that the person you made these for gets to know them as well as you did when you were crafting them – there’s so much to say, “Ahh, cool!” to.
My pages began with a bunch of autumn leaves collected from around the city, and the new song “Barghest” looping through my head. I started taking walks at night with my camera, trying to find images that fit the “Barghest” in my head, which was a jumble of moss, scabrous logs, and thick leaves brushing past one's face. I learned that I was really bad at taking pictures in the dark, but found some leaves that conveyed what I saw there: blackish purples, dark greens, and fungal-looking browns.
When the “Barghest” experiment went awry (too much tacky glue made the leaves pucker everywhere like lumpy dough), I tried pasting pieces of my dream journal together, and of course made the glue mistake all over again, this time with the best leaf of them all (bright cranberry colored, with dark veins, like a Spiderman costume – you can see a little bit of it in the corner).
Then I dug a hole of madness in my own dark woods and camped out there for two weeks with a Middlemarch essay-in-progress and some marshmallows. I also flunked a chemistry course, did something I’ve wanted to do since I was twelve and changed my concentration from the sciences to literature, heard my only brother say “I do” (to an English teacher – validation!), and asked the extremely kind moderators for a two-day extension that turned into a three-week one.
Then, oh man. As dumortierite (whose alteration is my favorite so far) said: “et voila, inspiration.” :)
In the corner: I want a map that says, “Here is the country of littleness, where words first fell into your mouths. Here are roads leading every direction. –Habibi, by Naomi Shihab Nye.
“sueñe con el futuro” – dream of the future. (In Spanish because of this and this, and because of the personal nostalgia factor.)
But I wish I hadn't had to cover up this. (It came right after these pages, which is fairly perfect.)
Have fun, Chelsea!