Migration makes use of two parallel voices that work together to compare the narrator’s romantic encounters to bird behavior. The narrator describes a series of encounters that shaped the way she views love and partnership. Each memory described is paired with a second voice, like that of a birdwatcher or outside observer, describing a similar behavior exhibited by a bird.
Excerpt from the above spread: The cowbird pushes the eggs from other birds’ nests, replacing them with her own.
You learn early that you are not maternal. Take refuge in the fact that you know this about yourself—it will save you from men who want to be fathers more than husbands. Your mother will remind you that your clock is ticking, but it isn’t. Hers is. You’d known for years—since your friends first started having baby showers, since your cousins first asked you to baby-sit—that you were not mother material. You didn’t know how to hold babies, how to talk to them, what to do with them. It wasn’t that you didn’t like children, you just didn’t want any of your own. You couldn’t give a good reason why—and people always asked.
It just seemed to you that if you were meant to have a brood, you would have felt some impulse, some urge, and the truth was, you didn’t feel anything.
Like much of my work, these stories are taken from my life. They are true in many ways, and yet probably a fiction. Thought parts were real and parts were imagined, they all touched on an emotional truth that had real resonance at the time. Seeing the behavior mirrored in that of birds made it seem more natural at times, like it might not be so strange after all, and to me that was both intriguing and comforting. This book was printed solely with photopolymer plates, using my handwriting at times. The bird images are made from carving photopolymer plates. All of the paper in this edition is handmade by me–some pages are made from kozo, abaca, corn husks from my father’s garden, and my old clothes (and yes, some of them I would have been wearing when the moments I describe took place). Migration is 5.5″ x 8″ and is a hardcover case binding, 72 pages. Edition size is 45. $375.