it's like tape you see, glittering from a distance, looping
through branches and wire fences/
you think – that's so pretty –and for a moment you forget you've seen it before and it draws the corners of your eyes in/
you get up close and see the plastic carcass, disembowelled in the mud, it's innards – brown tape suddenly dull when the sun goes in/
when i felt it the best i can say was it was like that transparent cassette case/
nothing in me put me in a player and push on and nothing will come out/
and i tried hard to think but thoughts blew me away and they thought they could see right through me/
they didn't like that so much was visible i was festooned with workings and words/
here now the insides have been taken out and put on display, hanging from the washing lines, waiting for the light so they can dance/
the stuff i took made me like that case – see through nothing going on here mister and im wearing my insides out still
Poet's comment: This piece represents the first entire collaboration by Bronwen and myself. I had had the image of a basket woven with words in my head for some time, and had discussed this with Bronwen. I then went away and wrote the words while Bronwen worked on the piece. The words are meant to be flowing, but I used a jagged sentence structure to represent the disparity between the narrator and others' perception of her. I love this final piece – in it I feel you can see a real development in both our work.
See also Basketcase 2
It was clear between Lisa and myself that the main image should be in the form of a basket, suggesting the title of the piece and encompassing many more links with mental breakdown. I imagined it to be monochrome and to be semi-transparent, open and vessel-like. The poem itself is displayed so that it can be read, but deciphering is hindered by the weaving of the words, scrambled in places and blank in others.