Sound Movement Text

Sound Movement Text
Kristopher Apple

In September of 2012 I began a weekly movement and text practice with dancer, choreo-grapher, colleague, and friend Leslie Seiters. For our first meeting I authored a simple practice procedure, which we developed and altered during the sub-sequent weeks. The poems in this collection either came directly out of the text that was generated during our practice or, in the case of Text of in Out of Context, was inspired by my observations of dance.

The most basic version of our practice consisted of one person writing while the other improvised movement and text. In the first round the improviser improvised spoken text, while the writer wrote down anything that was spoken. In round two the improviser improvised movement while the writer read out loud anything that was written in the previous round. In round three the improviser improvised both movement and text while the writer wrote anything that was said and read out loud anything that was written. Then the roles were reversed, and the process was repeated.

After each practice I compiled all the written material and extracted text I wanted to use for writing a poem. Then I assembled the text into a poem. Once the poem was assembled I continued to edit and shape. Most of the text is in its original form. I’ve added line and stanza breaks, punctuation, made spelling changes, and inserted new text when I was inspired to do so. For example, “I-do-I-do” and “take-tick-tell” in To/From Head/Pen were added during the editing process.

The title of this collection comes from my ongoing interest and practice to cultivate and integrate an awareness of the sound, movement, and text inherent in art and life.
—Kris Apple

Old Men Check the Weather
sip, sip, sip
I sit all day some days
sip, sip, sip
re-collecting, re-membering, re-calling
I would fail a memory test
sip, sip, sip
what adds up?
what matters?
loosening and dry
I sweat less
sip, sip
taste is different
sound is the same
I hear them outside the closed window
sip, sip, sip
across the bridge
a freeway
the least free way

Candy Cuff Boot Straps
candy cuff collapse steady steady low
happy like charlie brown
squirm inching along low
to the ground flip toes
quadruped bouncing lightly back
of knee air ground whirl reach
triped tripeding over then down then next to
air pushed through makes a low whistle
eyes zig zag below floating fingers
diving off a leg onto a wooden plank
a hand smacks a hand circles
—are you anxious now?
purring through fingers
—is this what you want to be doing?
you’re lost you’re not lost you’ve wandered off
finding where you’ve wandered off to
balance turn buloxy river
figure out people
—it’s mine—
figure out people
—I own it—
people out people
—I own—eat your’s—
—what are you worth?
seriously I am worth it
—you think—you wish—
one hundred million pennies
I forget and I tense up and I forget and
I think and I can’t think and I think I can’t think
I hear you but you can’t come in
—she’ll show me—she’ll let me—
as long as I do extra pass me if I fail
a sigh and a look
—that’s your nightmare?
a piece of nightmare puppeteering
crying laughing singing all mixed into one
forgetting being forget not knowing
not seeing this let go

curious support
buttons scratching
finger magnets
checkered partner
snake winding
saying yes saying no
right shoulder gown
four year old with a new toy
catching rain
spiraling off balance
chair hat wall boot
finger tip dragging
stool tilting
making a fort
boys kissing a stool
animals eating another animal
mouth track
dogs with bone
backed into a corner

piston and rand trampoline slop flings up
to scratch to scape to fight
front first barreling a little this way
puppeteering self puppeteering
from depths of earth past the sky reign it in
can’t escape the gravity of the situation
march end to end waves in between
we steal we feel indifferent in different
up for all to view in view we pause
tight rope guillotine drink
the well runs the tail peaks
up from under hiding
pas de bourree

ess tretchers wamp jiggle swing lish ball fish hook
spooker swing get up got up pray now
pray and turn yourself out
this swamp into bouncer
pray to gods
—pee lottes smearer—
ur pullup to heaven lizard face
try and may–ek–kit work
incomplete unsure and taking
burster of globes
down down down they make me weary
pull a fruit from my cheek drizzling apple
seizer be a bolt of truth a bolt of light
you try try to fight try to
pull urself up by boot straps

Lying Face Down
lying face down
my skin is running through pipes
rumbling waves through planks of wood
airplane coming in through the window
over and in and over and in

flatter than I was just a second ago
sternum folding
hollow empty void gone
twitching thumbs
the air is moving
vibrating small quick tiny fast
pouring in like Niagra falls
through a funnel into my head
outside in outside in

cross slink scoot
the softest body
swing here to there
fold unfold
surprise tilt
run run run run run
flat again
backs of limbs reach
I’ve got myself
start and stop
non-stop twisting
cables and ropes

dangerous places for small people
gentle–est nice–est
she is sleeping
don’t drop her
she could bite
get get get
really worked up
really worked up
get really worked up

reflections stain
movements bright
sunny preferences of temperature
I used to love heat
I used to sit naked in the sun
and not stress out
I want an umbrella
um is such a beautiful word
it’s like om
and alm
and am
it can linger in my mouth
ah is different
ever present in every
dimmer duller
dah dah daaaaah
consonants take up space differently
what about
ta ta ta ta ta
come on
this one – this wun – this won

I see you
what’s happening
what’s happening
what’s happening

I wish
I could care more
I am not an expert
I am not even here

wandering arms/eyes
floating absurd
—try it with your mouth—
the inhale of
lower lower lower
you are what is happening
—what is happening?
you are what is happening
—what is this worth to you today?
ha – ho – he – ha – he – ho

paper hand
ink paper hand
sliding swirling legs
behind me
ribs to the ground
forget about remembering
typewriter duck/chicken feet
it feels good to fall
reminds me where I am

To/From Head/Pen
I wait for a ride record without waiting a full revolution oh how fast it spins jostles sings vibrates slides makes a continuous sound teeth are all I hear bad dreams getting old I wonder believe that first song was magic trying to say sing anyone sing don’t laugh sing place your body here tell me where to start I am waiting not quite ready start tracing never make it up without stealing from here to here this helps touch always helps unless it doesn’t what about instructions—yes thanks—I’m lost like an interruption like a light touch to my head like a voice making sounds telling me giving signals turning my pen changing my direction I feel the ground shaking this is the earth quake what do I do I-do-I-do I-do-I-do I-do-I-do what-do-I-do I-do-why-do why-do-I-do I-do-what-do I-do-I-do you’ve been so close I could walk out this door my tongue tethered something repetitive I could not be further from singing something is changing everything is secret hide your food take-tick-tell everything say nothing take-tick-tell tick tick-tick take-tick-tell take-tick tick-tick take-tick-tell tick-tick take-tick take-tick-tick-tell tick-tick take-tell take-tick take-tick tick-tell tick-tick tick-tick tell take-tick tick take-tell tick-tell tick-tell-tick tick tick tell tick-tell tick tick tick-tell-tick tick tick-tick tick

Reason or Cause
reason or cause or reason or cause or
reason or caus or reason or caus or
reasuh nor caus or reasuh nor caus or
reasuh nor cahz or reasuh nor cahz or

reez uh nor cahz or reez uh nor cahz or
ree zuh nor cah zor ree zuh nor cah zor
ree zuhn or cah zory zuhn or cah zor
ree zuhnor cah zory zuhnor cah zor

ree zuhnor cahzory zuhnor cahzor
rezuhnor cahzory zuhnor cahzor
rezuhnor cahzoryzuhnor cahzor

Twenty-six folding
I see through each and every
Feet that are better off
Free fall couldn’t be freer
Leave the ground lightly
How can you just step like that?
Too even a surface for you

Watch, walk, stay
Contemplate air moving space
Balancing, knock, spring
Large ripples of air, of wood
Following seeing following seeing
Hang right side up from toes
Toes clasping grasp hands
Hanging from toes
Collect, spin, turn

Clasping toes
Hang right side up
Balancing large ripples
Toes follow along
If they knew each other better
How can you stop like that?
How can you stay like that?
Toes curl

Touch the earth
Soft feet touch
Your toes
Like a tool, like a lever
Convince me
Balance in your softness

Walking other places
Light on my feet
I strain just a little
See it differently
Revive something for my feet
My feet are about what?
I walked here from
Connect it cut my feet
What will happen next?

I’m leaving, I’m leaving, I’m leaving,
I’m staying, I’m leaving
I always know where I am
A two part
My favorite part

Feet are crossed
How, how, how can they not know
And like it

i n v i s i o n i n i m a g e n
suspended in time/space
and place
placed between
two rubbled monuments
of concrete and rebar
barefoot play–joy
happiness a blur
certain things

the photo strains
to keep up
—ecstasy is allusive

in and over
the gutter
in states
more like
impressions of faces

a world of
soft glow and shade
what is skin?
what is dirt?
with the rubbish

scarred concrete
fluid earth
like skin
always changing
unworried by furrows
new paths beget new paths beget new paths beget old paths beget
new paths
some lead somewhere
some lead nowhere
all lead

artifacts of light
and lent
a veneer of paper fibers
decay from friction
and oxidation
—handling wear; worn edges—
blur and fade
blur and fade

wait their turn
wait their chance
to stretch legs
in flight
over gutters
gutters full of
refuse and sewage

a lost shoe
a discarded newspaper
a puddle of urine and feces

the conductor stands
waiting for the
downbeat to drop
his baton-fingers
a single thread
spinning gold back into hay
the cows need to eat
the children need to eat

a foot shaped puddle of urine and feces
a foot shaped puddle of rain water
looks like a cloudy day
—must be rain

Text of in out of Context

Bodies in cycle cycling round each

Each a self

Each a body

Each a sound

Each a word-words-phrase-phrases

Words cycle cycling round each

Each a sound

Each a text

A text each in context and out of context

In and out of context cycling round

A word a sound a text a phrase a body

Bodies in and out

Of movement in and out

In of and out of

Out of movement and

Bodies out of movement

In and out of movement

Movement in and out of bodies moving

Moving in of, out of

In of, out of

In of stillness

Out of movement

Out of stillness

In of movement

In of, out of

In of, out of

Moving in cycles cycling in and out of

In and out of


Each a body

Each a movement

Each a self

Each a sound-a text-a word-a phrase

Phrases moving

Phrases sound

Phrases cycling in cycles of in and of out and

Of context and of out of context

Each a body

Each a movement

Each a self

Of each a sound sounds

Sounds moving, cycling round each

Each a cycle

Each a self

Each an out

Each an in

Each eaching in and out of cycles

Cycling in and out of context

In context each a self

In context each a sound

In context each a body

In context each a text

In context each out of context

Cycling in of, out of

In of, out of

In of, out of

In of, out of

Out of text each

Out of text sound

Out of text a body

Out of text a self

In text and out of text

In text and out of, context

In text and out of text

In text and out of, context

In each and each

In each a sound

In each a body, a movement, a text, a cycle

In and out of context

In of and out of a context

In and out and in a context

And in, and in, and in a text

And in and out and out of a context

Of text and in and out of context

Of in of out of text of context

Of text of context

Of text of out of text of context

Of in of out of in text of context

In text of context

In text of out of context

Out text of in of in out of context

In out of text of in of context

Out in context

Of out of text of in out of context

Of in of text of out in of context

Of out in of text

Of out in of context

Of in of out

Of in out of context