PETITIONARY PRAYERS (For Absent Grace)

Steven Polansky’s short story “Leg”, tells of an emotional distance between a father and a son, metaphorically signified by a wounded leg under neglect. The father chooses the act of petitionary prayer (a passive penance, like saying ten Hail Mary’s) over confrontation as his wound festers.

 

This piece continues my interest in the marginalization of seemingly ambiguous identities through this offering, a leg turned into a pile of fragments. I constructed pieces for this work without a full understanding of what it would look like, piecing together body-like bits from the remnants piles of local fabric supply stores, knowing that its form would also change each time that it was installed, constructing pieces that challenge expected notions of what a body should look like. Its intangible body seemed only to make sense as a collection, a pile of identity. Mostly stitched and prepared by hand, these constructed fragments mimic the strained stuttered limitations on language to accurately describe means of identity.

  

©2019 stephanie j williams