The Halloween decorations roundabout Exit 151 seem to be more elaborate (and possibly less tasteful) every year, so I thought perhaps I'd do my bit with an homage to Valentina Devine's haunting Scream. For those unfamiliar with the work, it's a patchwork curtain of many staring faces, intended to convey a woman's experience of the horrors and privation of war. There's a photo in America Knits by Melanie Falick, previously published as Knitting in America.
I knit up a prototype and have been trying to imagine a whole bunch of them pieced together, strung on a frame, flapping in the breeze in my front yard.
I dunno. To me it looks like dishcloths gone wrong – disturbing in its own way, I suppose, but I'm not entirely confident about where it would fall on the tasteful/not so tasteful continuum. Alarming the neighbors is OK, but I'd rather not produce an unintended lampoon. What do you think? Feel free to comment.
Meanwhile, blogless Kelli mentioned at MY SnB that her friend Tim, er, needled her a bit about knitting, something about needing to get a life. The bloggers present promised to offer a public knitterly rebuttal. Gentle readers may consider this a meme – tell off Tim! – if they so wish. Or, given most members of the SnB are making, have made, or plan to make Monkey socks, perhaps that should be sock it to Tim. Respectfully, compassionately, and nonviolently, of course.
Friend Tim, all I can say (with Eliot) is while many have heard the mermaids singing, each to each, knitters are fortunate in knowing that, actually, they do indeed sing to us. That pleasant shock of recognition, the thrill that one is known and called by name, the joy in belonging – these are wild and wonderful things in a stark, commercialized world that measures out life with coffee spoons. To be sure, at times it is the part of a true friend to question, even to criticize. So permit a stranger to suggest (with Neruda) that handknitting can contain both utility and goodness, happiness and beauty, and that that is a considerable and a very worthwhile thing.