Avant-Garde Journalism: Hannah Weiner's Early and Clairvoyant Journals
Weiner does indeed print legibly over the typescript, either strike-throughs of the "printing corrections" or to produce "bursts" and other graphic features, such as capital words set diagonally across the page. All the while, the questions are acute: "What does this mean" (4). Weiner also sees objects on spoken words (a reversal of sorts): "Say Lord's prayer, see blue t-shirt on will of 'thy will be done'. X on tress and black cape on pass of trespass" (4). Even at this early stage the diagonals are prefigured as "pictures now in down slant of energy" (4). There seems, at this point, to be some anticipation of a third voice to come;
Go to country tomorrow. If I stay home, will K call? Bubble on call. Bubble on stay. STAY HOME on gate. See COUNTRY on radiator (I see the words as I've written them in the notebook.) See radiator on bed, phone on radiator handle, handle on gate. (8)
Over the next several pages, the first diagonal print appears in capital script (written in over the typescript according to bracketed instructions to "drop in" the diagonal word) and the first "bubble" appears, though inconsistently, suggesting Weiner is as yet not functionally literate (i.e., the typescript follows the notebooks' source material on this count);
As sentences become disrupted as such, Weiner shifts more frequently into very brief paragraphs that become more legible as lyric verse. Compare this first instance (describing one of the many debates over retail matters) with the very last instance (describing a potential lover about whom the narrator is quite anxious throughout the piece, "D");
ONE AT STORE NO.
Sweaters I have on YES.
My life with duality. New sheet. KEEP on yes. DYE on no.
This may work. Yes.
This is ridiculous - no.
Self? No. Funny. Yes. Do I need to reinforce black gate?
Silver gate. No Yes?
OK on yes. NO lights up.
Confusion on gates. (12)
JUST A LITTLE AFFAIR in D's jacket color. JUST NOT PERSONAL
TOO SOON TO BE
NOW TRUE BLUE to be completed in blue/yellow. OURS NOT ALONE
Yellow 11, blue 8.
NOW OPEN TOMORROW NIGHT JUST FINISHED
THIS MESSAGE IS COMPLETE. OURS
BE OF GOOD CHEER
D IS A DEAR (69)