Joanna Gilman Hyde

"Good Morning, World!"

Tag: grey


THE COAST GUARD, Shelburne, N.S., Tuesday, July 20th, 1993 — 1B


by Harold Hart

Joanna Hyde of Shelburne has

been busy recently in her back-

yard painting the design of a four-

teen point maple leaf on a huge

40 by 30 foot map of Canada.

The fourteen points mark loca-

tions in Labrador and Quebec

where Hyde would like to position

light reflecting surfaces to reflect

star-like points of light in the out-

line of a maple leaf into outer


The large map arrived in Shel-

burne from Ottawa on May 17

where it had been hanging on an

outside wall of the National Arts

Centre.  It was put there by the

Canadian Conference of the Arts

earlier in the year in an effort to

pressure the Federal Govern-

ment to stop cutting funding for

arts programs.  It remained there

until the April 26 budget was


Joanna learned about the map

from an article in The Chronicle

Herald.  Being interested in what

is called public art – the kind of

art which is large and displayed

outdoors – Joanna decided she

wanted the map.  She contacted

the coordinator of the Canadian

Conference of the Arts and was

told she could have the map if she

would pay the shipping charges.

Joanna agreed and wound up the

new owner for just less than two

hundred dollars.

The map consists of twelve sec-

tions that were circulated to

more than 150 art galleries,

theatres, and schools in each

province where signatures were

affixed to protest government

funding cutbacks for the arts.

Once joined together the pieces

make a huge map of the country

with more than 400,000 signatures

appearing on it…

“Well, what is its weight?”

“Oh, it’s Dead Weight.”

“That’s OK.  I just cremated

My Mother —

She didn’t weigh very much.”

After She painted Her 14-point Maple Leaf

Joanna lay down

and almost died.

She almost died

for years and years.

Long after one husband

cut up the map for tarps

to cover wood piles

at Her First Marital Home

Joanna revived eventually

on poetry and bird song

to find in the Summer of 2016

the abandoned map sections —

one with moss and ferns growing

out of it —

With the help of Her Adult Children

She retrieved three surviving pieces

of The Giant “Ties That Bind

and dragged them across the county

to The East Side of Her Hawk House.

She laid them out

busy in Her Back Yard

hosing and scrubbing a 23-year build up

of Nova Scotia’s Forested Fate

stained and distressed

front and back

to dry in the sun

with the help of a couple of old towels —

not Her Grey One —

there was left no semblance of the configuration

of Canada — only the ghost

of a few red lines

a few patches of indelible signatures

and one partial strip of big black letters

along what must have been

the bottom — in English and French:


She arranged the pieces

some still edged by sturdy grommets —

into what became a nearly perfect square

measuring 27 feet by 23.5 feet:

She had Her Canvas.

She would paint on the BACK.

She folded up the three sections

and with the help of Her Second Husband

She piled Them onto the floor

of The Hawk Utility Room —

the floor She had been using

for Her Most Recent Paintings

and as She writes, She thinks

of building a platform

a stage

perhaps next summer

if there is the same lack of rain

as this one —

She would secure The Triptych

upside down, with the foundation

of Canadian signatures — what’s left of the original


and setting up Her Gallons of Paint

with broom and hose nearby

She would paint and sweep and hose

Stratosphere of The Universe




The Hawk Kitchen Outpost 9:55am

EYE am The Artist

standing at My Door

waving Good-bye to My Husband

dressed in My Thick Grey Robe

the substance of The Sky


on a day

when anything can happen


The Hawk Kitchen Outpost 10:11am

Standing firm in My Mrs Blair

grey sweat suit

from LL Bean

I order My Silver

watching The Shimmering Sea

and wearing no rings —

My Hands are naked

for the induction



The Hawk Kitchen Outpost 9:22am

EYE woke this morning

to a sky of white

in the aftermath

of seeing My Halo

for most of yesterday

— I feel worn out

in My Heavy Grey Robe

with the radio overlapping

My Husband’s soccer

“and the shadow of the day

will embrace the world in grey –“*


Linkin Park


The Hawk Computer 6:04 pm

My Husband, Dr William Hunter Blair, now believes

that My World Trade Center Roof Top Painting from 1984

titled Self Organizing Galaxy

may have given someone the idea

for 9/11


EYE have not been writing much —

EYE have been making recordings into M(EYE) cell phone

in-which M(EYE) Husband does not seem very interested.


The Tomato-coloured Couch 3:11pm

I have slipped

into cashmere grey

I have looked

@ My Passing

vehicles as grey now —

differing shades

to reassure Me

on My Track


The Hawk West Desk Window 10:58am

I am ready to go

in My Ripped Grey Capris

& sleeveless purple top

dressed in the colours

I couldn’t paint

on top of My Bathroom Door

— grey —

(We have no towel racks)

& purple draped over

the door handle


The Hawk En-suite Bath  7:30pm

In My Floor-length


I strike an imposing figure

sealed in grey


Silver Chains

I am the correct weight

for a Woman My Height

which is tall

as My Lacquered Hands

will reach

With These Hands

gilded in Gold

I reach for The Sun

never to forget The Moon

I observe The Stars

— The People —

living & dying

forever on

Our Earth


The Hawk Window Seat 8:46am

I’ve picked out

My Husband’s Wednesday attire —

Dockers M made in Vietnam

pin-striped shirt

charcoal grey wool trousers

LL Bean size 34″ by 29″

He’s in the tub

& I’m in Eliza’s black negligee

ready to wash Dr Blair’s

magnificent hair