I am making handmade paper
again today away from the sunshine under the olive tree. It is a joyouscuriously simple process lading out dripping handfuls of this cottage-cheese-like pulp adding it to the water stirring it with my fingers. Feeling it swimfreely deliquescentin the large vat testingwaiting judging thendipping the wood-and-screen of mold-and-deckle liftinggently settling side/to/side and front/to/back I see the first displacement of the liquid like grass adjusting after wind-breath (appropriately called ``throwing off the wave''). Is it poem, picture or paper that remains? I sponge the waterleafcoerce the couching onto felts turnturn the press to urge the excess out wetness its weaknessbut fiber-bound with strength when dry For the first time now I am aware of hot sun on my neck the tree-shade has moved beyond me and I begin to gather my handmade harvest onto the open-slatted drying racks satisfied intriguedreading each piece like a poem.