Vivien Eime

Instructions Towards Joy

The Tragedy of Vivien Eime
Instructions Towards Joy
Performance Piece

how is it possible to offload history
take the multitudal hooks of sadness
and depart
through tears
or rinsed out through the ears of friends.

we receive no specific
instructions toward joy
are merely directed toward good

that is

warned away from bad

but how often this just does not work

nearly all of us are not animals in the woods
most need tracks to joy after treading over asphalt


the source for optimism is


where once I
in my curvaceous form
trod the asphalt in heels

I might now throw them away
wear a skirt
even if I do choose to wear sandshoes.

for little of us know that responsibility for self
resounds towards others…
is the anchor to the heart.

alert your focus to shift slightly
start for a sense of beginning with
the rope.

feel it in your hands
and leave the connecting linking
chain to an eye in future.

taking hold of the main shaft
of course
leads to the arrow’s head

feel the rope

for it is that you will
eventually heave

lassoo out into the void

in effort to claim one’s roots.

when all is familiar


and the mind is loose enough

not to consider itself.


„ah, yes… but to whom???“
responds the whimper.

Circumstance and
our race becomes.

or our creator
can not
or will not
admit to mistake
and so,
we exist
as an accident.

are set off emulating this sense of
what is done is done
and just get on.

swerve to acclimatise
skim to make do
regret weaknesses innate
and keep to ourselves as much
as is possible
when chances to be among friends
does not warrant itself.

we are shown the way
and given choice.

slowly we recognise ourselves and each other.

wide eyed
we peer at what we may have
and wobble dance toward


a tragic king’s chair


all outside us


we are gifted with

a chair

[in this day passing I will unhesitatingly note all that
pleases me so that it can be remembered I at least identify
that which leads to joy]


I was gifted with an arm chair



one that swivels

I have yet to truly take this seat as my own
prefer to offer it to guests
who brave the downward staircase

oh it pleases me to see such pleasures taken
as a chair that swivels


I neglected to say



the breath out that this friend
who sinks into my chair.

they who have come pale and
slip shod
over asphalt
and to cement – my steps –

their choice of shoes
creating sensation

fresh rubber being
virgin knicked as a
ham on a bone

below the level of asphalt
they now sit
hands conduct a telling of
their journey
dodging traffic
consciously surfing
information tides

withstanding requests for
small change
and desires for larger

sipping tea or drafting beer
they discuss the relentlessness
of life’s tidings

television as the communicant

line thrown to a point

with these instructions to think:

does one use a lily pond to catch a

does one simply write it all
then leap it out
to feed fish?

the venice captain offers marriage
whilst more intended men snigger
and wink

and all I see is a livid
at the stern side…
a kiss is not a brand –
‚tis an act of old to
honour love

a sudden full circle turn of chair
makes a creak knock us to laughter…


spin    spin

spin    this


one could sit in a field of strawberries
and wait for an angel or simply
listen to that captain

and I speak his words
not mine
for you to apply
as I am told the
world is expanding
and spins

will one day stop

as I will

further away from the mystery
straight as ye goe
or not

we die
but as this sounds
we are alive

three holes midway down the slope of the wall of a

so spin    spin    spin this laughter
with your company:

when laughter turns to memory
and you have left this holiday mooring

I will sink into that swivelling chair.

and oh how I will sink…

adjust cushions to my liking
and contemplate all that has led me to this sinking…

what I will rise to when sitting is done

all in my own variety


endings…    goodbyes…

marvellous or monstrous
monumental or mis-timed
momentary splits…

a veering…

to the left is my preference…


‚tis a joy to delegate one’s own.


First performed by Vivien Eime 22 June 1996 at CBD Gallery, Sydney

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