Shibari, a poem by Kari McKern

As Art, so the Body is,

creativity happens in the context of constraint,
the demands of form.

Jute tendons, a slippery beeswax skin.
Fibres coloured by taste, talent and experience.
Woven together into strength.
Hanging on rods.
Best appreciated displayed.

The artist's signature is always writ large but the work's meaning
often poorly attributed; to maladjustment or misanthropy or mother when it flows from deeper springs.
A truth lost on critics.
Lover's bind hard.
An arboreal baby once held tight so as not to fall is still swaddled.
Ape's in cold caves huddle close.

Evolution in endless dance.
The predator's rough love that remakes the prey
and so, in turn, is itself remade. (2)

Neat, raw or rough; impressionist, minimalist or ironic.
Rendered in bold strokes; but with sensitivity and care, traditions honoured, tools respected.
Canvas caressed and conserved.
Genre? Gothic, death metal, mystery, or romantic comedy, the style is
still life; the best work tensioned, tight and vibrant.
Occasionally pushed too hard.

Body pressed into service and bound up with urgent callings.
The spirit calm, relaxed, transcendent, exultant and free.
Tied up but not tied down.

Kari McKern 24/1/13
(For Peter and Natalia)

Notes:1) shibari ( 縛り ): (adverb) the act of tying, binding or weaving. (not specifically or necessarily for the purpose of sexual bondage. Shibari is often play and therapy.)
(2) This refers to: (a) Frank Herbert's observation that "the predator loves the prey" in the sense of both the eneral evolutionary race in the herbivore and carnivore and
(b) the selection preassure of the sexual conflict; the poem, generally, should not be construed in any way as endorsing the subjugation of women, but rather to hint at the complexity of that dynamic.
3) We are all our own work of shibari.

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