Initiator: Carla Gelbaum – Study No. 12 for You Are Here Series

Initiator Artist: Carla Gelbaum
Artwork Title: Study No. 12 for You Are Here Series
Size: 11 x 14″
Medium: Mixed media
Price: NFS (prints available)

Responder Author: Jim Gunshinan
Writing Title: Memory Theatre
Price: NFS

The grandmother I never met
rented a piano, but nobody in her household
played, as far as I know.

My father
worked as an usher at Radio City Music Hall.
Imagine him in a tuxedo on a small Navy vessel
traveling up and down the Yang Si River.
My mother played the cymbals for the band at
Big Creek High School, West Virginia.
Imagine her wearing a bear hat, changing with the guards
at Buckingham Palace; my grandfather

tying back his tomato plants with strips of cloth
ripped from old bed sheets; and
my other grandmother, the one whose pound cake
I crave
in her comfy chair
praying the rosary with her eyes closed.
In this story, you are the Professor on Gilligan’s Island

trying to make electricity from a coconut.
Nobody is talking to each other.
We’re all just standing by.

Take the coconut and put it to your ear
feel its fibery roughness
and listen.

© 2023 Jim Gunshinan