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Jessica Anderson

The Globe of memory
“ I find myself thinking that we were all great story-tellers at number six. Yes, all of us, meeting in passages or assembling in each other’s quarters or in the square, were busy collating, and presenting to ourselves and the other three, the truthful fictions of our lives.
I am often lonely for that audience, and yet, if it were possible to return and regain it, I would not go. An audience, especially so sympathetic an audience, imposes restrictions I now wish to do without.
“What do you do with yourself all day long?” asks Lyn Wilmot, as I show her how to set in a sleeve.
“If you can do that,” she says, showing an inclination to prod me in the arm, “couldn’t you make something?”
But I have made things, concocted things, all my life. Perhaps I shall do so again (and indeed there are times when I do prefigure some small hand-made object), but at present my concern is to find things. My globe of memory is in free spin, with no obscure side, and although at times in its swelling and spinning it offers the queer suggestion that imagination is only memory at one, or two, or twenty, removes, my interest now is in repudiating, or in trying to repudiate, those removes, even if it ends by my finding something only as small as a stone lying on the pale grass.”
Tirra Lirra by the River by Jessica Anderson, Penguin Books, Australia 1978.

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