‘Connected Bones’ – Sue’s presentation text

A bone

A boat

A floating bone


Make a stitch

A cut, then stitch

Hold that









Tie a knot

Hitch, bend, the clutch of the sea



27 bones, 8 form the wrist, 19 the palm

scaphoid, boat shaped,

navicular, it’s a small bone

in horses and humans


Sailing out from here

to river indian country

hands dividing, portions, parcels,

Mattapan becoming Dorchester

leaving here,

not enough land, too many people,


A boat

bound for Massachussetts Bay,

taking on board

heifers, mares, seamen, suckling calves

Ludlow, Rossitor, Wolcott, Warhams, and

Fords, Ways, Capens, Purchases and

Hoskins, Denslows, Gillets and Strongs and

Symondsbury people on the Mary and John.



– Joints of Philosophy

–  Joints of Order

–  Bracelets of life


A bone

A boat

A floating bone

In my hand

Goes out to another shore

And ties a knot

A wind knot

To keep things steady, or sweep everything gone



The capitate, very round




Darn mend patch

Cut a sheeps horn to a ring

and cover it

Blanket stitch, buttonhole

Spun wool from the back of the sheep

Cover the button

Better, easier on the hands and feet, on the clothes to work in a house making buttons

2 shillings a day, six dozen buttons

than work in the fields wear and tear,


Make a shoe,

By hand

A bone

A boat

Sailing out from here,

on the horizontal, past fault corner

Needles, threads, always a thimble

Sewing fields, ice, stitching fog

All along the sound

John Frankilin’s men, army coated with board games

Broken, phalanges and metatarsles scattered, beared.

There in the ice a covered button,

And Dorset buttons at that

Five in a row

And all around the silver


Hold a hand


Make a knot

A fishing boat

The hamate, well it has a hook

this house, full of salt

hooked fish, iced up

crying because, dad, my hands are so cold on the four girls sailing out from Lulworth


this house,

a salt house

feed the seagulls he said

because they’re your ancestors


I give devise and bequeath my fishing room

Two stores and one third part of a stage

Two codtraps, five seal nets

And my share of the herring nets



A bone

A boat

A floating bone


Trapezium – it has a saddle shaped



Freake, Clap, Sprague,

Maverick arriving there

hands washed in the planters plea,

feet treading out replica Dorset village bounds,


on peripatetic indian land


– Will

– Reason

– Percussion



Frekes of Bridport, Frekes of Newfoundland

James Freake and Phoebe Ann?

There on the ancestry website

the great-great-grandparents

of Marlene Creates!


After all this time.

You up on Blast Hole Pond Road,

And me here waving from this house

With one third of the schooner ‘rolling wave’

left for my daughter Matilda


Triquetral the triangular, flattened

Trapezoid, a boot,

A handmade shoe


Tie a knot, a wind knot

Come on button

Come on horses

Grow peas,

Throw stones in the sea kids, they’ll come back to you

Like the crate MV Grande Atlantico, thrown up by the sea here trying to find the man David Balance, my friend


Newfoundland, New England, Conneticut, come closer

Grasping, grip

We set out across the ocean

Signed language, read the palms

Extended our fingers

Trapped fish

Sharpened the knife


Come on land, hurry

Grow peas, hemp and flax


Pisiform, here

A pea-shaped bone

Fits nicely into the space

On the bony landmarks in the body

Take up contact,

The slack in the tissue

It just fits

Deposit, dissolve, redeposit


Womens hands wrapping sheep bones

Then John Ashton’s Great Exhibition,

and here it is

the button making machine!

And the rest is done, finished, poor, ruined

Hand labour’s coming back now, into fashion


Lunate a cresent moon.

At birth, only the shafts of the metacarpals and phalanges are here.

The two extremities develop in life

Bone density and mass responding to fluid, gravity, use






Waving off the adventurous people for the long crossings

Horses, peas, sheep, flowers planted


I found a Dorset button on ebay

Barb’s shop

Shipped it back to here

To look at it


Knot, bend, hitch

Lazy daisy, Fly,

Slip, Corner, Join,


The Sprague Database is a computerized database

containing information on 360,206 individuals

from worldwide families of Sprague and Sprague-derivative names.




Feather stitch

Bones of birds full of air

Heavy weight of these cliffs,



A bone

A boat

A floating bone


26 or 27

Are you sure it’s 27?


Sue Palmer

May 2012