This item is not in the library — it is a part of: C. Cardew (ed.), Nature Study Notes (full, 1969).

At some point in an improvisation let the absence of something strike you. Set to detecting its hidden presence and exposing it (drawing it out).


A decadent variant: Provide an improvisation with something the absence of which has struck you.
Ode: Water in desert sand / Love in an estranged marriage / Silence at the seaside /
(space for more lines).
Water in desert sand can be exposed by constructing a 'solar still': Dig a hole in the sand and place a cup in the bottom. Cover the hole with a plastic sheet weighted with stones around the edge, then place a stone in the centre of the sheet so as to draws it down in the shape of a cone whose apex is just above the cup. Sunshine is needed, and this is the kind of thing the improviser may have to provide. (In the decadent variant he would have the much easier option of simply making water in the sand.)

Cornelius Cardew

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