Music: Paul Fletcher. Scientific data: Australian Antarctic Division, University of Technology Sydney. Animation: Lisa Roberts. 2020

Nothingness

When I left high School
I lived with my grandmother
(my father's mother, Norah).
Her house was near Melbourne University
where I was studying arts.
Her house was quiet, not like home.

Another student lived with us,
David Carter, writing a thesis
after wintering in Antarctica.
He had lived for months on a glacier,
collecting data to analyse.
When he talked about Antarctica
I imagined a quiet white space
- a nothingness.

Last year we met up again.
In Sydney. He spoke about the silence
and how he valued that still.
He reminded me of how we first met,
nearly 40 years ago,
in the icy silence
of my grandmother's house.

He described something
of the silence I found briefly
in Antarctica.
It was out of this world.

He described his experience
of "nothingness" in Antarctica:
Back straight.
Eyes skyward.
Arms wide.
A cross.

Lisa Roberts, 2021

 


2022
We loved each other
Getting my mother's sewing machine

2021
Amelia Hair-Heart
the adventurous guinea-pig
2020
Nothingness
Antarctic ice
2019
Seeding treaty
Indigenous and Western art and science meet

2019
Antarctic heritage
Krill mating
2019
Beauty that was
Past and present life and death
2017
Southern Ocean Wrack
The sea in my blood
2016
Growing and sharing knowledge
Animating conversation
2013
Art from climate science
Data for action

 

Mind Map