Search Results for: trillim

Trillim Cooks Emily Dickinson’s Black Cake

Well, the year is ending, and with it comes the end of my posting Trillim’s work on BCC, much to the sorrow of both of you reading them. I gave myself until the end of the year to post those I thought most amenable to separate short (ha ha) postings. I will go back to more regular posts (I’ve actually been on a bit of hiatus), with diatribes on Climate Change, Evolution, and Ecology as I sees her.

However the Trillim work continues and I hope a volume of selections from the Trillim Archives will appear in the near future. However, the other entries are far longer even than the longer postings I’ve provided. These will likely be removed should the Archive go to press, so read them soon. They may be found here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and a recent book can be found here.

The following was written shortly after her cruise to Rome in which she discovered what people-objects were, and prior to Trillim’s losing her right hand and her two year imprisonment in Southeast Asia. As always her life’s work has been to explore the connections between things: People, ecologies, and objects of all types large and small. This is one of my favorites because of the pictures that scholars found in an envelope tucked in her journal.
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Gilda Trillim on her ‘Melancholia’

After her return from the Soviet Union, Gilda seems to have fallen into depression. Her friend Babs Lake took her on an Atlantic Cruise that sailed from Boston to Rome to try and break her from its chains. During that time her spirits lifted significantly. She was reading Moby Dick at the time and this was found folded in her hardback copy of the book. It is a fascinating peep into the things she was thinking at the time and would later inform her fiction. It is believed by most Trilliam scholars that this was written about two days into the voyage. The adventures of Trillim can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, and a recent book can be found here.
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Gilda Trillim and the freedom to trap muskrats

Conibear_model_220_body-gripping_trap,_set.After reading Jacob’s post Creation Out of Givenness I remembered something that Gilda Trillim had written (whose life on an alternative time line has been detailed on these pages). After scouring her archives I found this. I include it here, again not to be read (it’s nearly 6000 words, far too long for a blog post, so please, please, remember that this was not put up to be read, I think my fellow bloggers would be quite put out if I left the impression that these long excursions into nonsense were to be thought of as one of BCC’s high quality offerings. Even their patience has its limits.), but rather this is placed here to archive her adventures because in our universe she has not existed but should have. The adventures of Trillim can be found here, here, here, here, here, and a recent book can be found here.

Notes for Gilda’s Novel Muskrat Trap
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Gilda Trillim explores an animated world

A new letter from Gilda Trillim was discovered in an estate sale in Los Angeles, tucked in a copy of one of her books. I had to share it, even though I have little doubt that Gilda is wearing out her welcome in the Bloggernacle (she is certainly not to everyone’s taste). It’s long and I would not read it if I were you. I am placing these here mostly to assemble an archive that allows future Mormon ficstorians to discover her. Still this one opens interesting questions that are worth exploring.

Dear Babs,

I lost the second match and am out. I’m feeling a little blue and empty today. I can almost hear you telling me (in your musical lilting voice) to stop moping and turn to a good book. I will. I promise. Literature has always been my healing balm, the life preserver thrown onto the surface of my hurricanes, and you are right, or the you I imagine telling me to read anyway. I need to find a book that will take me out of this world and plant me in another. Such worlds I have no doubt are as real as this one. Just because it finds its existence principally in my head, does not mean that that astral plane is less real than this one. For all I know I may be a fictitious character in the head of another being who exists on another sphere of existence. I picture him now, a biology professor perhaps, living in the mountains of the west, struggling to make sense of my life as a character in one of his fictions, wondering who I am and how I have come to capture his imagination, the two of us moving in a dance of meaning across the worlds, worlds different in ontology and subjectivity, each of us imprinting on the other new realities and new ways of understanding what it means to be. Surely there is room for multiple realities each playing with and constructing things from the snippets of what reality we each can claim. Am I mad? Or is he? Who can say?
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Gilda Trillim Studies Junk Drawer Ecology in Skjolden, Norway

My research into Trillim’s life can be found here, here, here, here, and a recent book can be found here. This letter was just donated to the Trillim Archives in Beijing. It was undated, but its authenticity is beyond reproach. Handwriting analysis, stable isotope analysis of paper and ink, and most compelling, a mention of the letter in a letter from Babs to her mother (referred to as “that crazy junk drawer letter) all confirm it is real. On a small grant from the Trillim Studies Foundation, I traveled to Skjolden and confirm that a small farmhouse, which was owned by a family named Vermeulen, once stood on the site up the valley from the town.

Dear Babs, [Read more…]

Gilda Trillim Paints an Apple Seed in the Urals

Possible picture of Gilda Trillim in the convent garden.

Trillim’s work continues to fascinate me. My research into her life can be found here, here, here and a recent book can be found here. Her impossible story continues to raise questions about whether she is real. Of course, she is real. She has been as historically validated as Helen of Troy or Don Quixote or any other figure from history.

A largely unknown piece of Gilda Trillim’s life was uncovered due to some remarkable detective work by Chinese scholar Yuan Mei. He has been relentless in pursuing information on the ‘lost year’ as it is known in Trillim studies. The story of his discovery is worth a book or even a novel in-and-of-itself as his researches have taken him from rural Idaho to the base of the Ural Mountains. [Read more…]

A letter to Babs Lake from Gilda Trillim shortly after the Uber Cup in 1957

I found the following fascinating letter in the Trillim Archives in Beijing during my last research trip there. Her speculations are perhaps a little too bold, but do seem to portend certain trends in Mormon Theology we see today. It was written to Babs Lake and dated May, 19 1957. It’s intriguing to me because she draws on the work of Henri Bergson, the French/Polish philosopher whose work has fascinated me for a number of years. Bergson would have been much more well-known in 1957 than he is today, but her tying his work to Mormon thought and theology reflects an extraordinarily deep understanding of contemporaneous evolutionary philosophy.
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Grace and the Literature of Gilda Trillim

This Saturday the Association for Mormon Letters will have its annual meeting. In support of their work, I would like explore one of Mormon literature’s most important pioneers, although you are unlikely to have heard of her since, sadly, her reputation within the LDS community has largely fallen off. Also unfortunate is that interest in her among American literary critics as also waned since its peak in the late 70s. Still, there continues a steady stream of dissertations, theses, and papers discussing her work. Despite her star setting somewhat in the West, she yet has a large following in China, where a major retranslation of some of her best work was just released this week in Beijing. However, her largest influence continues to be found in Ethiopia where certain aspects of her work seem to speak to the Ethiopian Orthodox mind with more affinity than anywhere else in the world. It was in fact in Addis Ababa working on tsetse fly research that I first came upon the work of Gilda Trillim. [Read more…]

My Turn on Earth

Some of Gilda Trillim’s papers at the archive

Continuing my research into the life and writing Gilda Trillim, I found the following theological poem in one of her high school notebooks. While the title appears to be tongue-in-cheek and added years after she wrote this, the rest seems like the kind of poetic theology that Adam Miller calls for. What’s astonishing is she seems to anticipate many current issues—like intelligent design creationism. While as a biologist I cannot speak to her poetics, her biology is really quite up to snuff and modern. The centrality in this work of a plan of salvation that draws on evolution seems to anticipate my own papers on the issue years ahead of their appearance (and let me be clear, I had not read Trillim prior to writing my Dialogue article or I certainly would have cited her).

I’m not really sure what this is. It seems to be a play of sorts? A hymn of praise in places? Poetry? It’s difficult to classify and outside of the writing Trillim usually does with her minimalist novels. There is a maudlin quality, typical of such reimaginings of the Preexistence, but nonetheless this seems to explore things like consciousness and free will in interesting, if ultimately facile ways. Here is her play (or whatever). [Read more…]


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