The spindly stalks creep out from the nexus of the composition like arachnid extremities. The pronounced compression of space pushes the roughly hewn roots into the forefront for the beholder’s contemplation. The sharp points and scraggly edges of the root system prevent easy entrance into the scene. Oller creates a kind of coconut Noli me tangere: we may look, but not touch.
In silence, the women gather. Girls draw together, jostling to get in front of the camera, but once they are there they don’t know how to behave. One chews her hair, the other gesticulates, losing her cool out the ends of her fingers, she fans them like a child searching blind-mole for a lost toy. A woman’s face has collapsed. A mother searching for a lost child. As she speaks of him she strokes her hand against her own cheek.
Was that season artery or vein? when the days stretched like Broadway, & the nights undid our shirts – the temperature so slight you could raise your arms in flight & feel nothing, the body as air. But there was also the need for hurt. And dusk: a ghost of a boy tempted to feel his weight, to put his palm to the depth, touch the pupil, the dead turbine of god’s one good cataracted eye.