Hold the body  the baby          the urge
            to hold that stutters muscle
            that cradles warm air
crush yours into mine to tell me what I’ll miss
from the way you move through a room
give me proximity like a threat then
give it again so I’ll remember it real good
I like best to find me suggestive
like best the self           to let you move into what’s left
            let it stutter 
like it best when you can’t tell me anything
your wanting me to want
it’s best when I want into dark
                        what I don’t have to say aloud
there’s nothing to say but         breath
to bring to the room a mercy of limbs
I came to give your hands a burden
I came to your hands the cradle of wrist
it’ll look good for me to look good doing that
                        like it best like that like I let you do like I mean it
it’s best if we only remember through the body
to build muscle around it before you go
the urge to reach you stutters my body
and I speak from the choke of my throat
don’t let us let the air know that this is our most vulnerable
the crush of things the proximity that might kill
            don’t let the room empty before
I’ve built the muscle to remember
don’t go until I can like it like that

During a time of social distancing, art is a powerful way for us to unite.

Translating meaning across two different art forms, in 2020 Red Room Poetry and the National Gallery of Australia (NGA) brought together poet Evelyn Araluen and photographic artist Pixy Liao. Evelyn was commissioned to respond poetically to Pixy’s intimate 2010 work, 'Some words are just between us'. The pieces were published side-by-side in the NGA's Artonview Winter magazine 2020. Pixy's work was exhibited in the NGA's 2020 exhibition, 'The Body Electric' – a showcase of women artists on the subjects of sex, pleasure and desire.