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The Swamp and the Rock

Size: 8" x 9"
One night we went to have supper with our close friends, the novelist John Hawkes and his wife Sophie, together with novelist and Conjunctions editor Brad Morrow, fiction writer Mary Caponegro and artist Sheffield Van Buren. Brad had been interviewing Jack that day for his magazine, but his tape recorder batteries had died, so we brought him some fresh ones. At supper, Jack launched into a grand emotional encomium to the swamp, as contrasted to the tree, and asked everyone to choose: tree or swamp. I said I wanted to be a rock which completely upset Jack’s plans. "I said 'erotic,' Pilar, not 'the rock!'" Brad meanwhile had reloaded the batteries and turned on the recorder, capturing the dialogue for his magazine. I think Mary and Sheffield were quite alarmed by the comic vehemence of our exchange, and they said nothing. Afterwards, I completed a small tapestry, "The Swamp and the Rock," in memory of this night. —P.C.

The full interview with Brad’s introduction can be found in the online Conjunctions archives.