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An Unsettled Score

by Sidne K. Gard


"An Unsettled Score" Transcript

There are days where I’m walking down the street, amidst a crowd of people and umbrellas, and I am sure that the world is going to end. I am running out of paper. My fingers are covered in graphite and ink. I’ve been making grids, charts, graphs. Every notebook I have is pages full of little boxes, left empty. The thing is, I don’t have the right syllables anymore. They left, along with you. It is raining again. The rain makes less sense now. Numbers help. Counting helps. If only, there was an integer for raindrops. Perhaps there is joy in unraveling.


Artist Statement

“An Unsettled Score” is an exploration of grief and sound. When we lose people, they still haunt us and there isn’t always a way to categorize those feelings with logic. With this audio poem, and the wonderful voice talents of J. R. Steele and sampling of sounds from, I sought to replicate the cyclic feelings of loss. The world feels like it is ending. Words are not enough to explain what it means for that person to no longer be in your life. And a strange joy in unraveling from a said person. All of it wrapped up in an overwhelming repetition of sound. The counting, the repeated 1…2…3…4…, is a nod to how counting is often used as part of techniques to try to calm oneself down from a panic or anxiety attack. Amidst rainstorms, music, static, and your own heartbeat, you try to count to ground yourself. It’s a tug-of-war between the grief in your mind and the world your body is standing within. And regardless of the outcome, the cycle is going to start over, leaving the score of your own experiences unsettled.

Sidne K. Gard is a writer and artist studying at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Their work is interdisciplinary blending the lines between poetry, art, and technology. They have a regular column at F News Magazine, “Loving the Monster,” which focuses on monsters in media and how those monsters represent the word. In high school, they received a Certificate of Artistry at the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts. Now they are focused on exploring how to use new medias like audio and coding along with traditional forms like comics, fashion, and illustration to further their poetry and storytelling.

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