We love artists at The Wild Word.

Our Artist-in-Residence page provides a space for artists to showcase their work and to spread their creative wings.  In their month of residency, invited artists are encouraged to collaborate with other contributors within the magazine, to experiment and develop new projects, while giving us an insight into their creative process.

Our VENUS RISING Artist-in-Residence is musician, doula, and writer Ohrkid.

Ohrkid is a musician, doula, and writer based in Berlin. They released their debut album, PDA, in January.

“Ohrkid’s voice is moving, not because of its force but because of its ease. We’re meant to listen to them sing.” – Hysteria Magazine

“Have you been looking for a dreamy, erotic escape to shamelessly blast in your room this spring?…In just five songs, PDA sets a mood full of dreamy soundscapes painted with reflections of pleasure, disgust, lust, and longing.” – BasedBrat

Instagram
Spotify
Soundcloud
Bandcamp

Photos and video by Jo Eisley – www.visualsweat.com

By Ohrkid

The planet Venus looks like Earth, only burning with red, consuming heat. With world leaders like T***p in the driver’s seat, Earth could soon be burning like its twin. For many, it is more accurate to say it’s already on fire. Whether this reality is external, internal, or both, earthlings are responding to the ongoing reign of patriarchy with shaking fists, heads tossed back, barbaric yawps flung out from parched, insistent lungs. Hair burning, witches and muggles alike shiver with the intensity of what needs to change. The collective’s eyes are rolling in response to absurd abuses of power, and as our incensed gaze turns inward towards our third eyes, we’re seeing clearer than ever before visions of a new future.

Venus is benevolent co-creator of our new world, transformed (and transforming) by fire. Trans* folks, GNC people, women and men are realizing that Earth is literally our common ground. We all have equally vested interest in its healing; we all have equal power and responsibility to heal it. If we can be saved, it will require continually redefining power outside of white cis hetero maleness. With love, eroticism, connection, relationship, fairness, groundedness, steadfastness, and expansive inclusivity, the revolution burns. In us, and through us.

As a queer GNC artist, I use my voice, my words, my song, and my very dreams, to practice radical vulnerability and be the change I wish to see in the world. As Wild Word’s artist in residence, I allow myself to be visible, audible, legible, and felt, in a world where my community’s stories are often erased and forgotten. As Audre Lorde, legendary feminist* scholar wrote, “I feel, therefore I can be free.”

Note on the texts: the dream manuscripts I share are transcribed, except for small adjustments, exactly as they were written in my dream journal in the moments after dreaming.

DREAM: KILLER WHALE

swimming with the killer
whale. (black + white)
it immediately finds me
and is dancing with me.
I relax completely as the
thrill of fear runs through
my body.
it nips me a few times.
I fear it will eat me.
but I am so proud it
chose me

showing off.

By Ohrkid

Dream: “Snake Dance River”

I want Andrés to kiss me. We’re journeying through a park. I’m building up to it in inadequate ways. It’s raining and flooding. The flood rivers are very muddy, full of debris. Andrés has made it over this bed, a big flower bed, (also deeply flooded with muddy water), and stands on the other side, beckoning me. I think to scramble across it fast and be on the other side with him. But when I place my hands on the soil, they are each (palms and fingers) filled with prickly pear needles or something similar—invisible plant piercers.

Someone else we’re with is very concerned—oh no! They’re going to panic, but I want them to be quiet so I can focus. As I wave my hands through the flood waters, (which I can reach without bending down), the prickly pear spines are being carried away by the current, dislodging from my hands.

I go around the block instead of over it.

Now the sun is coming out. Andrés points out a beautiful white screened-in wrap-around porch on the roof of one of the buildings. “Aw, beautiful,” I say. I tell him I’ve seen many similar things in cities like Paris and New York, but this place would be extra special to be in, because one would look over Berlin.

“And I love Berlin,” I say affectionately.

Next thing I remember we’re floating down a river close to the finish and we’ve drifted apart. There is a wet-looking green crocodile embedded in the sand at the bottom of the shallow flowing water (which is a bit sandy, but in general, much clearer than the muddy water before.) “Crocodile!” I say, and point him out (to Lauren?) Then, without much thinking, I propel myself over him. He doesn’t react. I am safe.

Now I’m on dry land. There is a crowd. People are watching fireworks. (A moment to explain these: while fireworks are normally launched from the earthly ground, and fly up into the sky, these fireworks are thrown from the top of a very high tower, and explode in the air before flying to the ground. It looks very dangerous.) I am watching and wondering how it’s done. I inch closer and closer to the sources during a pause. They boom and flash overhead again, and I want to be farther away. I’m afraid debris and fire will fall on me, and ash will get in my eyes.

Before I leave, I see, high up at the top of the tower from which the fireworks are launched, that people are also being thrown down off the tower. One girl’s body falls in silhouette. Like a soft, limp shadow doll, her silhouette is somehow upside down for someone falling; her hair hangs below her. I am horrified, thinking she must be landing on the concrete below and dying.

Now Libby and Tyson meet up with me father back. They think we need to pay for something. (Note: in the earthly world, we take out money from the bank when we need cash; in this world, we were putting it into the bank to get cash.) Tyson takes out a six hundred dollar bill and makes a big to-do about it being his last; we have to not overspend. He hands it to me, and I put it in my back pocket (it feels like I’m wearing corduroys with a belt). I look at him and Libby and say emphatically, ‘I live on this much per month.’ They are surprised.

I walk up to the bank teller while they sit on a couch behind her. (Note: this is an extremely fancy bank. It looks like a mansion in terms of extreme decoration. I think there is a candelabra near the teller.)

I take the cash out of my pocket and place it on the counter.

When I do, I feel an extremely strong sensation fill my back, tantalizing me, while two people behind me each play a recorder to the left or right side of my back, respectively.

The recorder music is enchanting at the very level of tissues. Movement is irresistible, and I’m not truly interested in resisting. As my back and arms unfold in sinuous, semi-orgasmic guided movement, I notice vaguely that I’m wearing a long-sleeved workout zip-up jacket and huge, round black sunglasses.

I dance, arms flowing, back waving.

Dream: “Spiritual Doorway”

By Ohrkid

The first part I remember, I am in an upstairs chamber with Annie D’Amato and Lauren Lougeé. Annie is guiding us through to some pathway/doorway of spiritual existence. She describes her own experience of getting there, and at first I have no idea what she’s talking about. She is describing how she tried to squeeze through many different ways—standing, squeezing her shoulder through, then feet first, until she describes basically going butt first (the image of which now reminds me of a breech baby). Apparently, she says this was the only way she fit. Then she could enter the next world, of which she tells stories, which seem important.

I feel challenged to try to go. Lauren is also trying. As soon as I lay down on the floor—(this whole place is wooden, like a cabin bunk house. Some blankets. Loft, wooden, dark bedroom kind of place, with no bed)—on my right side in the fetal position, already the world is tugging and pulling me in. It’s so intense. I think I feel what she means, about the entrance being slim and having to be smooshed through.

I am at once caught in the doorway, with a spiritual wind coursing/crashing through me, pulling me towards the next level, and still lying on the floor there, and inside the place. It’s like a maze. Of earthly tunnels.

On the floor, I am shaking, my teeth are chattering, and I am moaning, as the feelings course through me, pulling me in.

Somehow I get out, back to the place with Lauren and Annie. Annie is standing up, tall. She doesn’t seem to recognize what I’ve just been through.

I grab some (luscious, pastel-like) colored pencils and start to fill in a green and blue section on a giant mural that’s being made on a paper on the floor. The green is used to highlight the blue. I am coloring fiercely because it feels that an energy/force is moving my hand as I color in automatically, deepening the green sections. I am concerned it will look like lines rather than blended shading.

Now I take my own piece of paper and grab a pink pastel and draw myself. I am coloring in the eyelashes when Annie D grabs the paper from me and goes, “Do you think we could save the paper for Chris Fitzsimmons? He’s been doing a lot of amazing drawings, come look.” She shows me lots of very diverse drawings, and I agree they’re important, but I can see that there’s an entire huge pad of paper. I feel rejected, unused, and wonder why she’d take my paper away.

I am totally energetically drained now. I can hardly stand up. I start to ask for some chaga tea or kakao, but Annie D interrupts me to say, as if to discredit my exhaustion, “The first time, you’re mainly experiencing your fantasy of it”.

Dream: “Mary Seeking Freedom, Part I”

By Ohrkid

In the beginning of my dream, I had to slip down five levels (like stories, only larger) on an enormous inflated white plastic slide to get here, to Red Pine Camp. I was coming back for the summer to work. As I slid down the enormous slide (one of many all in a row), there were entire cities on each level that I was passing through, which I could see from a distance. People in business suits with briefcases, looking forward, looking at nothing, heads into the wind.

Before I got on the slide, I was moseying around an abandoned churchground. In no hurry to be anywhere, enjoying the lazy, quiet, sunshiney feeling of the day, and the sound of insects. I was walking through the grass on the way to investigate the very old stone church at the edge of the mountaintop, near the trees, when I looked up and saw people on metal ski lifts (red accents.) One man was hanging upside down by his knees; he looked athletic and playful, like a high schooler on his day off. He was using his phone while upside down.

Someone walking by (an old man in a checked shirt, brown belt, and slacks), noticed my curiosity and explained. He called them zip lines. He said northern Wisconsin had become a good place for celebrities to hide and be unknown. Like back in the days of those famous criminals (such as Capone and Dillinger). I feel a kind of yearning to interact with them, to know them personally. But they are way up there. And where will they end up when they’re off that ride?

Now, after sliding down the slide, I’m at camp. I go to the bathroom in this cabin/lodge-style building, and find a tiny complex silver triangle hanging on the back of the wooden door. I marvel at the instrument. I want to play it, but where is the wand? I have no time, as the boss (Mrs. Wittencamp) is going to come interrupt me. I think about the lack of access to instruments and opportunities to play (with) music I had as a child, and how much I yearned for that. I feel the echo of that wound now, as in this instant I still feel that faraway feeling of not being “one of the people” who gets to play instruments. That it’s a special kind and I’m not native to that group. I think maybe the wand is part of the triangle itself—I reach to investigate…

Then something about my environment changes. I walk into a room with lots of fresh air and sunlight, one you could walk right out of onto a patio. Mary is there, holding her toddler (little boy, blonde.) When she sees me, she looks deeply into my eyes and says, with intense feeling, “I need a break.” I say, ‘of course,’ meaning I will watch her boy for a while. He is sleeping, which is a relief because I find toddlers difficult when awake. I walk to the door (one whole side of the room is floor to ceiling glass doors) and see her walking off through a green field to where there are trees—and through the breaks in the trees—sunlight. I sense clearly that there is water behind them, which Mary, in her freedom, is seeking.

She took a joint with her. When she comes back, she is totally relaxed, and laughing. She has been undeniably freed by her break. She lies on the bed and gets into the happy baby yoga pose, still smoking. Her sweatpants are creamy orange. There is a friend with her now. They both do happy baby pose and laugh.

I remember, during the time she was away and I watched her walk into the forest, how I was subtly feeling trapped inside. By both meanings of the word, inside: as in, in the house, but also, trapped by my own self, by my own choices, by my own resistance to leaving. Yearning for nature, but afraid of it. Afraid of being uncomfortable. Of waking the child.

The sun sets as she goes.

Ohrkid is a musician, doula, and writer based in Berlin. They released their debut album, PDA, in January.

“Ohrkid’s voice is moving, not because of its force but because of its ease. We’re meant to listen to them sing.” – Hysteria Magazine

“Have you been looking for a dreamy, erotic escape to shamelessly blast in your room this spring?…In just five songs, PDA sets a mood full of dreamy soundscapes painted with reflections of pleasure, disgust, lust, and longing.” – BasedBrat

Instagram
Spotify
Soundcloud
Bandcamp

Photos and video by Jo Eisley – www.visualsweat.com

Dream: “Mary Seeking Freedom Part II”



When the moon is out, St. Vincent is there. I am extremely excited to meet her. I want to tell her how much I love her, how much she’s meant to me. But I am trying to strike a balance between being cool and being honest. I think I ask her to play a track from her upcoming album. I think I don’t believe she’ll say yes. But she brings out her laptop and says okay. 

At the same time, there is something reserved about her. It’s like she thinks the song will be stolen, or the laptop will be stolen, if she shares too much or at the wrong time. She presses play. 

The beginning is so quiet, I’m leaning in, still. I am expecting a huge explosion. Excited for the electric guitar to appear and slam the whole track out. I’m waiting. I’m waiting. It’s taking an oddly long time. At some point, I relax and lie back, and allow myself just to listen to what I’m hearing. This, just this, is the song, I think. 

It sounds foreign to me—kind of like Turkish or Arabic music might sound. And when it finishes, I’m left with the feeling it was incomplete, as though she was playing us only part of the track, hiding the full piece. I think about listening for it when the album comes out, like I will hear it very quietly underneath other sounds. 

Afterwards, Mary and St. Vincent go to soap dip in a cold spring stream outside, with stones for a bottom near a little bridge. I plan to join them, then think of the icy water, not yet warmed by summer, and end up just laying there longer, on the soft blanket on the soft bed, on my back, thinking. I think how the water would be icy and how it would feel perfect, incredible, once I got over the initial shock.

I get up feeling ready to bathe now although not sure I will go through with it, and I see St. Vincent coming back, wrapped in her towel, with her soap dip basket. She is finished.

Now the sun is up and it’s one of those bright days, so much light it’s almost white in color. I have an idea in my head that I have orders to kill this thing which is coming towards me. It’s a wild daemon/trickster creature. I feel it is my duty (according to Authority), to kill him. We are battling on this whole interwoven network of stone canals. all made of white stones. I am forcing him away with very strong forcefield magic, pushing him hard even as he keeps trying to come back towards me. We are embroiled in this struggle for life. I, thinking that there were orders to kill him (I was going to push him either into the water, to drown, or into the fire, to burn.) He would do anything, anything to live. I loathe him as I fight with him. In the dream, to me, he was disgusting. Now as I am awake, I realize he never used any magic to try to hurt me; he merely steadily, forcefully, tried to get near me. He was only trying to get near me. He came very close at times, which scared me. 

As he defied me, his face flashed between Icelandic blue, electric green, and silver, with little dots moving around it everywhere. Now that i look back as I am awake, I find this vivid, incredible and enchanting. I saw it in the dream as a trick. I thought he was trying to disguise himself as a tactic to…escape? I also considered that it was a sign he was winning, that it proved his resistance. (This creature did not speak, which I knew.)

Desperate for a solution, I looked to my left and saw taxi cabs which were driving-floating down from the air onto the surface of the water on one of the canals, parked there waiting with their golden lights on, in an orderly line. They had an air of holiness about them. They looked like they were a little less than physical, and a little more than machines.

As I desperately pushed the daemon with all my might towards the cab, the one nearest magically popped its door open. Grateful and insistent, I shoved the daemon into the cab. The instant I did, the door closed and the cab took off. I sensed it would drive a long way away. I was uneasy I hadn’t destroyed the daemon, but at least now it would be gone somewhere I could deny it existed, and it wouldn’t be shoving itself at me anymore.

Ohrkid is a musician, doula, and writer based in Berlin. They released their debut album, PDA, in January.

“Ohrkid’s voice is moving, not because of its force but because of its ease. We’re meant to listen to them sing.” – Hysteria Magazine

“Have you been looking for a dreamy, erotic escape to shamelessly blast in your room this spring?…In just five songs, PDA sets a mood full of dreamy soundscapes painted with reflections of pleasure, disgust, lust, and longing.” – BasedBrat

Instagram
Spotify
Soundcloud
Bandcamp

Photos and video by Jo Eisley – www.visualsweat.com