How many photos of a place are too many?
Jay Griffiths remembers time “by the sea” at her grandparents’ place as a child:
“We learned about tides and chance, storms and sun, the vicissitudes of what is lost and found, flotsam and jetsam, castaway luck, islands, sea-songs, rings, riddles and pledges. We learned the sense of a clear slate in the renewal of the tide-smoothed sand.”
Today I find myself a long way from you and the children. I am at the State Prison in Reidsville which is about 230 miles from Atlanta. They picked me up from the DeKalb jail about 4 ’0 clock this morning. I know this whole experience is very difficult for you to adjust to, especially in your condition of pregnancy, but as I said to you yesterday this is the cross that we must bear for the freedom of our people.”
-Martin Luther King, Jr.
Over 300 former residents of the Georgia State Prison in Reidsville lie below concrete crosses with black stenciled numbers. Unlike Martin Luther King, who spent time here in October of 1960, these poor souls had no family to say goodbye, let alone write a letter to.
Click here for a map of the scenic route.
For a map of this scenic bike route, click here.
General Orders No. 9 is a title as peculiar as the smoking rabbit staring back from the top shelf of new releases at Vision Video. The lone copy has neither synopsis, nor cast list. One of three young clerks says he’s seen it, and recommends watching under the influence of cough syrup. Below the kid’s ironic Dali ‘stache comes a vague description, “…really, really, really long shots of a river, and some kind of an environmental message.” He doesn’t have to say another word.
In a 2011 interview with Filmmaker Magazine, Robert Pearsons succinctly describes the award-winning General Orders No. 9 as “a balance of visuals, voice and music.” The Middle Georgia native never went to film school, and his haunting debut was 11 years in the making.
According to the film’s website, it’s “an experimental documentary that contemplates the signs of loss and change in the American South as potent metaphors of personal and collective destiny.”
Metaphysical cartography inspired by mappae mundi mixes with juxtaposed shots of urban blight and bucolic rural landscapes, inciting difficult questions, while roads and highways sweep over land like a cancer.
Pearson’s influences include, among others, the writings of William Bartram, and storied film directors Herzog, Tarkovsky, and David Lynch. William Davidson’s soft-spoken narration in a deep drawl morphs from historical accounts of early colonization over animated county maps, to trance-like ruminations on human dominion over the natural world. View the official trailer here.
Rusted rooftops like this one on Highway 15 evoke William Basinski’s melancholic tribute to September 11th. Listeners experience emotive decay as looping classical snippets on vintage magnetic tape deteriorate while ferrite disintegrates like oxidizing tin in the Georgia sun.
It rained for 3 days straight as Tropical Storm Debby strolled across the Georgia/Florida border early last week, dropping two feet of rain in some places. The canal that snakes through the old neighborhood swelled while moccasins made home visits.
Photo Courtesy of Surfjaxpier.com
Thursday morning, when it cleared up and Debby moved out into the Atlantic, the waves were waist to chest high, and throwing barrels!