Anne Blonstein



A note on the poemcards from the Marina–Anne dialogue

"I have always been a great postcard writer, and at some point it simply occurred to me to start sending friends poems on cards, not only when I travelled abroad but also, for example, when I've visited exhibitions (which I do a lot). Also, as an expatriate, I have many friends and acquaintances who live outside Switzerland and this seemed like a good way to stay in touch with them. The fact that from 1999 I started writing journal-like poems—in part as occasional, lyric complements to the more focused sequence I would be working on—that encoded (differently each year) in their structure the date on which they were written perhaps also contributed to the obviousness of sending out these poems. What most of the recipients didn't know, I think, was that I usually sent the same poem to between three and five people, but took great care that each card was in some way individualized: for example, the same poem but a different image on the card; or the same image and the same poem but with the text printed in a different colour; or, the most minimal difference: signing my name in a different colour! I have a sense also that the internet has something to do with the poemcards. I deeply miss the materiality and the personalization of letter (and card) writing, and the poemcards—of which I sent out A LOT—were a sort of countervirtual gesture. And also, I have to admit, this was a way of bringing my poetry regularly into the homes of my friends between and in the absence of book publications. My poetic voice is not 'this' discursive voice, and through the cards I could perform all my parts for those close to me."