Broken Mouth

Song for the First Born: Karen Hoeberg
January 18 – February 16, 2002

a response to the exhibition by Shawna Beharry

I often wonder what it means to invite or place “prayer” within a gallery.

What is appropriate for an artist to ask of others?


I walk slowly and quickly.

I kneel and stand.

I eat and grow hungry again.

Small answers.

Decaying.

Broken Mouth tells a story:

In the beginning dogs could speak. Also they could shave. First dog shaved night from day. Second dog shaved earth from water. Third dog shaved water from sky. Fourth dog shaved sun from moon. Fifth dog shaved bird from fish. Sixth dog shaved people from the animals. Big commotion.

Begin again.

In the beginning dogs could speak. Also they could shave. Not that they did, but that they could. When the waters came, first dog got in the boat and took the other dogs with him. Water became angry and pulled the boat under. Big commotion. First dog in big trouble. Open his mouth wide. First song born. Water have big ears. Pull at song. Song get bigger. Keep pulling. Song get bigger than water. Have to put it some place. Push it out. Song become sky. Sky get scared. Throw down. Song become impatient. What she do now?

Broken Mouth push her foot into the ground and dig hard.

In the beginning. Everything was food. Dog was food. Song was food. Dance was food. Nobody nothing starving. Everybody one big mouth eating. One day, somebody find an eye lying on the ground. What this? Somebody ask. Eye start talking. Eye talk and talk and talk. Eye won’t stop talking. Eye won’t shut up. Everybody listen. Food get bored and go away. Everybody hungry. Eye keep talkng.

What she do now? Start singing but no song come.

Broken Mouth.


Shauna Beharry Caicco lives and writes in Montreal.