wrong connections

Andra Rotaru

“In the British Journal of Psychology R. Penrose published the impossible “tribar.” Penrose called it a three-dimensional rectangular structure. But it is certainly not the projection of an intact spatial structure. The “impossible tribar” holds together as a drawing purely and simply by means of incorrect connections between quite normal elements. The three right angles are completely normal, but they have been joined together in a false, spatially impossible way.” (Bruno Ernst, The Magic Mirror of M. C. Escher)

she sits on a tuft of grass: drying under her. even her clothes dry on her. make some wishes when throwing something in the water. rust solders iron under water, no one passes, sounds of bursts of water.

membranes in every organ break the ones close. packs of wild creatures break the dawn. the smell of dry skin and water tossing.

water thumping. they stretch out their claws and grab organisms leaping out. mill blades turn. the axis spreads the motion. the constant supply in the upper part of the mill. below flour and bran.

kinetic air, mechanical air. the energy of an old woman at the edge of water.

crack. when hair hits hair

In the 1875 photograph, the woman had a stroller next to her. In it, a little girl held a wooden horse. Its mane of 3.172 coarse hairs. Every time the saddle rocked, a hair cracked.

The photograph was taken when the mane was certain to calm down the infant. Otherwise the little girl would suck on her nails until crack. They’d form a ditch rising in the middle and the corneous formation would remain so forever. Her fingers would end in ingrown claws, unnecessary deformities.

gnash. when dentine gives 

When her first teeth came out, her mother soothed her gums with alcohol-infused cotton balls. The child let out a shrill cry, her gums swelled, and the redness from the alcohol resembled necrosis. When she put ice in a gauze pouch on the outer cheek, the pain became bearable. A twinge went across her body. She clenched her teeth so hard, the pressure of the upper teeth on the lower escaped in a snap, the imminent corrosion of enamel.

blink. the unpredictability of a figure turned asymmetrical

the axis on which 2 eyes can seem symmetrical either close up or far away is perturbed. When palms clap, out of fear the little girl closes her eyelids. It happens so fast, not even dolls with plastic eyes can imitate her. She often presses her eyelids until they become purple. Someone’s mere gaze becomes painful, causes her spasms. These muscles pulled at from every side make the eyes twitch a few seconds.

gnaw. a child’s fingers

soft pink tissue macerated inside the mouth. Lips stick to the bony surface of the phalanges, she savors the tough protein material, the appendix of the skin. Ke-ra-tin.

What does the root grow out of?

after the nail grows, the finger is coated, the external edge of the nail is dead, white. “human nails have been preserved from ancestors, they used them for defense.”

the little girl gnaws loudly. she doesn’t know it’s a sign of aggression. she can’t defend herself, so she defuses her weapons.


aur: gold, Aurel, golden-haired child, you are gold, my life for all the gold in the world, a chemical element in the periodic table with the symbol Au and atomic number 79, transitional metal, ornamental metal, stable to corrosives.


found as sparkling crumbs in river sands and in alluvial deposits:

electronegativity (Pauling): 2,54

The Gold Museum, unique in Europe, in Brad, Hunedoara county

the girl looks up at the photographer for a second, for a moment she holds a ball tight and suddenly blinks: the photo was dated by the father in 1983, 3 years old, blond child

nuc: walnut—rhymes with cuckoo. Cuc: where a male toddler pees. A migratory bird of the Cuculiformes order, the Cuculidae family

Preservation status:

Extinct                                                  Endangered                                     Low Risk
EX                                                         EW, CR, EN, VU, NT                     LC

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata                        Binomial nomenclature: Cuculus canorus

The cuckoo lays its eggs in other birds’ nests. Cuckoo clock, cuckoo milk, alone like a cuckoo.


“I am always going home
always to my father’s house” (Novalis)

even if today this voice is foreign, I will use it. with it I’ll tell you “in those days of gross viviparous reproduction, children were always brought up by their parents (. . .) eventually their minds would see things as their bodies did” (A. Huxley)

the animals stood there but ignored me, watching with the indifference of beasts my gravity-defying accomplishments.


“The lower the caste, (. . .) the shorter the oxygen.” (Aldous Huxley)

wrote down the words in large letters, then prayed to be able to stop her. break out of this body, stop the dependence! the infant has confusing habits. she doesn’t do anything if she doesn’t want to. forcing her is desensitizing. every maternal talk is a toxic invasion.

“to ensure themselves a minimum of continuity, the child resorts to separating: the object under compulsion is split into “good” and “bad” objects, which will have relatively distinct purposes in the play of projections and introjections. the child that identifies as one or the other will go from euphoric states to feeling abandoned, persecuted, annihilated.” (Anne-Marie Blanchard)

when the surfaces of chaos aren’t deep anymore, silence emerges completely.


the greatest fear is self-prophecy. to recognize nothing years later.
the dying are still waiting.
forms made of forms.
I met a dead man rising with his hand up

ghosts from a young age disintegrate slowly.
my head held in palms. feet tied up.
they put me on the table, covered me. they forced me to close my eyes.


There was a time when I’d lay a handkerchief on his body, it was a breathless moment. His breath was inexistent, so was the wonder of a morning when shrubs poured themselves over us. In the background, I could hear: this is the big night.

Edges bent inside, humans and other creatures now perish right out of his hand, nights on shores, ice in shipwrecks, the call of the disappeared, traces of bodies in trenches, sleepwalking horses in a forced march, blond children, sons, blood from sacrificed animals.

“Present present presentness
High mahogany bed roods &
raills do ring loop ties back
A sets down and C takes up
conformity to that uniformity
Ownership and ownership it
is a maxim of logic the Double
of the object is that I desire it” (Susan Howe, The Midnight)

translated from the Romanian by Anca Roncea