there will be life again (2018)

Imagine this wire would be the bone of a migratory bird.

And these bags would be air bags, performing the container of our viral responsibilities.

You there and you here

And we and those manifold

in the ongoing performativity of our present and past

air exchanges.

You do it together, you become-with each other,

air bags are the containers of our viral responsibilities.

This performance performs our connectivity through a bone of a migratory bird.

Travelling as air migrants,

collecting ABC of toxic air pollutants;


A as Acetaldehyde

B as Benzene

C as Carbon Tetrachloride

D as DDE

E as Ethylene Oxid

F as Formaldehyde

G as Glycol Ethers

H as Heptachlor

I as Isophorone

L as Lindane

M as Methanol

N as Naphtalene

P as Propoxur

Q as Quinloine

R as Radionuclides

S as Styrene

T as Trichlroethylene

V as Vinyl acetate

X as Xylenes


Toxic winds travel fast and over long distances, so do also birds.

Birds have lungs but they also have air sacs.

Containers and sacs are capacious bags of collecting, carrying, and telling the stuff of living.

The air sacs can tell us the stories of the airs as they are the devices of the respiratory system of birds.

Stories in between many extinctions.

No bird wants to sing now!

and me, am I an uncombative human being?

Let it be said at once in SF author Ursula Le Guin’s words: “I am an aging and angry woman, laying about me with my handbag, fighting hoodlums off.”

And I believe, like Le Guin and Haraway, that this is just one of these damned things you have to do in order to go on gathering and telling stories.

No bird wants to sing now,

Let’s shout and speak then!

This performance performs that there will be life again.


Mysterious Starling, Extinct

Amsterdam Duck, Extinct

White Winged Sandpiper, Extinct

Laughing Owl, Extinct

King Island Emu, Extinct

Thick Billed Ground Dove, Extinct

Reunion Night Heron, Extinct

Paradise Parrot, Extinct

Norfolk Island Ground Dove, Extinct

Great Auk, Extinct

Bar Winged Rail, Extinct

Robust White-Eye, Extinct

Snail-eating Coua, Extinct

Bush Wren, Extinct

Red-Moustached Fruit-Dove, Extinct

Guam Flycatcher, Extinct

South Island Piopio, Extinct

Liverpool Pigeon, Extinct


And so on.

This performance performs that there will be life again.

That’s why this performance is.

©Stefanie Knobel, 2018