KATE HOLFORD





Curatorial artist based in Glasgow, Scotland. Art Director of Stillpoint Magazine.






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PREPARATION: RULES FOR A TRUTHTELLER
1. You cannot stray far from the truth, as if your legs are bound with wire. Before you move you must lift your ankles so they rest against the edge of the metal sheeting and run them back and forth until the wire snaps.



1. You cannot stray far from the truth, as if burned by electric shocks from the fence. You’d rested your elbow on one in the valley just three days ago, an immediate reminder that you are not supposed to be here, that you are performing. Across the dip in your elbow where the bone meets bone there is now a mark that you feel out with the fingers of your right hand.



1. You cannot stray far from the truth, because you were brought up to never tell lies. On other days you were brought up to lie by omission, and this double life is what brings you back again and again to the question: what do you mean by honest? One page flicks to another page and in the rain the ink runs through to the cover.



1. You cannot stray far from the truth, because there are rules to be kept here. Within the reality you build you must make it clear what is yours and what is fair game for interpretation. It is up to you to say this is where you draw the line. You take that knife back up and sharpen your pencil.



1. You cannot stray far from the truth, and you know that this is weakness. Others you know can escape themselves in phantasms, let loose with acid and limbs. But you crack at open waters, the horror of that deep dark nothingness beneath the surface, the palpitations. You don’t need to imagine how it feels for your heart to stop, you remember the freefall, the serene acceptance all at once like a squint that releases.



1. You cannot stray far from the truth, but you’ve committed to it now—the door’s swung shut on your beating fists. The colon has set the list running down the page. You panic and push your hand into the mouth of the letterbox, wave your fingers into the black air inside until the skin on your palm splits and you accept that it’s done. You draft an apology in your head as you walk back up the street to your door, grip your hands to the front of your thighs: an anti-gesture.



1. You cannot stray far from the truth, but it’s what you need to do to survive, or at least to make it convincing. The plan you must follow is a ploy, although it sits so close to the plot which your fingers must type. You stare a while at the slice of silver that sits between the Y and the T, and then you start again at the top of the page: Dear Baby…



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