rout/e started out as a trail underfoot, a bike path, a desire trail, a road, a creekbed, a contour line. The terrain shifts: rocky, swampy, soft, well marked, barely visible, wet, foggy, insect-heavy~
rout/e ran from 1996 to about 2005, often in small runs of 50 or less, with sporadic timing. The last printed issue was designed to be recombinant, recycled -poems placed in old art magazines that were mailed to me by contributors. I switched up the magazines and resent them with poems in them. The idea was for the poems to keep moving – a sort of kinetic notion – for the contributors to send them on again. I don’t think this happened, but the idea had been cycling around for awhile to get the poems in view in a larger sense than through a booklet form. Not inclined to spend a lot of free time online, I decided to transport rout/e into a footpress project, and started to do so in 2010/2011. In the gap years between 2005 and 2011 I was busy enough with other life things to just let the idea sit.
I’ve done quite a bit of walking while travelling, as well as locally as part of the everyday. I’m often delighted by the number of text-based materials I find on trails and routes – stonework, markings, the messagings of one sort or another. Materiality, shape, space, surfaces, page(s). Multiplied. In 2010, when more firmly considering developing rout/e, I asked a number of poets if I could post their poems on trails…and the first manifestation of the footpress was a sort of ‘nature note’ mockup – poems placed under plexiglass on plywood and posted with 2×1’s on the trails. These worked very well, though some were paintballed and some were taken or re-posted elsewhere, or otherwise subject to human or animal activities.