Quadrophonic audio installation in a cabin under a Ginkgo tree. Lyric and installation Wendy Morris / Composition and vocals Mariske Broeckmeyer / Exhibition Alias / Netwerk Aalst / Curators Pieternel Vermoortel and Piet Mertens/ 2019
The Errant Womb They say that in the middle of the flanks of a woman lies the WOMB, a female viscous, closely RESEMBLING AN ANIMAL that it is moved of itself HITHER AND THITHER in the flanks also UPWARDS in a direct line also OBLIQUELY to the right or the left to the liver or the spleen that it is likewise subject to PROLAPSE downwards and in a word it is altogether entirely ERRATIC E....RRATIC E....RRATIC Caused by retention of the menses or excessive fatigue lack of food lack of sexuality DRYNESS or lightness of the womb Then the WOMB HITS THE LIVER and produces sudden suffocation as it occupies the BREATHING passage around the belly, gasping GASPING The ARID womb might move to the HEAD to the HEART the RIBS BOWELS It strikes the LIVER and the woman turns up the whites of her eyes she grinds her teeth and saliva flows from her mouth and she becomes CHILLED and some become LIVID They say the most vulnerable are VIRGINS AND WIDOWS for they are not moistened MOISTENED by male semen deposited in their wombs and they are URGED TO MARRY AND GET PREGNANT E...RRATIC E...RRATIC The ERRANT WOMB is like AN ANIMAL AN ANIMAL WITHIN AN ANIMAL A WILD ANIMAL with frenetic desires entirely WITHOUT REASON WITHOUT SELF-CONTROL It sinks its teeth into and CHEWS CHEWS on the internal organs CHEWS like a WILD BEAST A PASSIONATE BEAST A DEMON with malicious intent O WOMB black and blackening eat blood and drink blood as a serpent you COIL as a lion you ROAR By all the deities, RETURN TO YOUR SEAT do not lean into the RIGHT PART of the ribs do not lean into the LEFT PART nor take a bite from the HEART like a dog but STOP and REMAIN IN YOUR PROPER PLACE without chewing as long as I abjure you HALLELUJAH amen E...RRATIC E...RRATIC the errant erratic wandering womb FUMIGATE her under the nostrils with burning wool and add to the fire asphalt, castoreum, sulfur and pitch for the womb, they say, is an olfactory organ with a discerning sense of smell SNUFF the candle! SMOULDER the feathers! SQUASH the stinkbugs! ROT the fish! FETID odours, rank miasmas, pungent fumes will repel REPEL the womb from the higher places to which she has errantly STRAYED, it is said and a vineyard infested with VERMIN shall be FUMIGATED by burning hair from the head of a woman - and this is also a curative for the UPWARD MOVEMENT of the womb. SWEET-SMELLING unguents rubbed rubbed into the thighs and applied to her GENITALIA will LURE coax entice BEGUILE the ERRANT womb homewards for the womb delights in FRAGRANT smells styrax, storax and OPOPANAX, resin, BALM and balsam cinnamon, calamint and CLOVES They say women alone are possessed of a MECHANICALLY DEFECTIVE very FAULTY BODY PART that moves of itself that IMBIBES FUMES Yes, imbibes fumes AS FUEL, we say AS FUEL, womb says AS FUEL, the errant itinerant journeying womb says AS FUEL, the straying wayfaring wandering womb says SNUFF the candle! SMOULDER the feathers! SQUASH the stinkbugs! hhhnmmm hhmmmm sniff sniffing fumes as FUEL, we say.
The Errant Womb was written up as a lyric in the Cabin during the first winter of the Covid pandemic. It is a part of the Lost Volumes.