Saturday, November 26, 2011

Collage 599

I copied out the word for "little falcon" which transliterates to "sokolik". In this poignant scene, Pierre had just witnessed the execution of many soldiers, and narrowly escaped the same fate. He is thrown into a shed where he meets Platon Karataev whose nickname is "little falcon". Platon addresses Pierre with his own nickname. Pierre is clearly traumatized and experiences flashbacks. Platon had been lying in hospital, dying of fever, when he was arrested by the French. They have an interesting interaction. Platon is a kind of spiritual teacher to Pierre, helping to process what he has just experienced. He helps bring Pierre back from the brink of madness when he shares some baked potatoes with him. He even has a small bag of salt, tied with a string. Pierre has never experienced anything so delicious. There is also this little dog in the scene who to me represents the life force. I have a dog who I adore -- she even has a Russian name, Sasha. The presence of an animal brings a certain energy and unconditional love into the mix. Platon in a sense saves Pierre -- he shows him some human warmth, understanding and kindness at Pierre's greatest hour of need.

Team Tolstoy did a collaborative collage workshop last weekend at The Eliot School in Jamaica Plain, Massachsetts. Please check out their blog entry here.  -- Lola

Lola Baltzell
from page 453-454, volume 2 of original text
collage, embroidery thread, ink
made 7/29/11
Pevear/Volokhonsky translation page 969-970

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