quiet strings bear the mass of bones

Test version only
 a project based upon aspects of the text of Frankenstein

with Diane Powers


'The Journal of Sorrow'

Begun 1822
But for my Child it could not
End too soon.

October 2 – 1822. Genoa

September – 18

"On the Eighth of July I finished my journal.
This is a curious coincidence –
The date still remains, the fatal 8th
– a monument to shew that all ended then.
And I begin again? – oh. never!
But several motives induce me,
when the day has gone down,
and all is silent around me,
steeped in sleep, to pen, as occasion wills,
my reflexions & feelings.
First; I have now no friend.
For eight years
my soul
I communicated with unlimited freedom
with one/ whose genius,
far transcending mine,
awakened & guided my thoughts;
I conversed with him;
rectified my errors of judgement,
obtained new lights from him,
& my mind was satisfied.

Now I am alone! Oh, how alone!

The stars may behold my tears,
& the winds drink my sighs –
but my thoughts are a sealed treasure which I can confide to none.
White paper – wilt thou be my confident?"

                                                   Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley


A journal entry in 1815......

 “.....dream that my little baby came to life again;
 that it had only been cold,
and that we rubbed it before the fire,
and it lives.”
“infuse a spark of being into the lifeless thing that lay at my feet,”


"Quiet strings bear the mass of bones"

Beginnings and miracles....................................
‘White paper – wilt thou be my confident?
I will trust thee fully, for none shall see what I write.'


The modern Prometheus



"It was the secrets of heaven and earth that I desired to learn"


The bride of Prometheus


"Will you smile at the enthusiasm I express concerning this divine wanderer?"



"whether it was the outward substance of things or the inner spirit of nature

 and the mysterious soul of man that occupied me,

 still my inquiries were directed to the metaphysical,

 or in its highest sense, the physical secrets of the world"


"he loved the measure of their music, the cadence of their breath"


"my food is not that of man;

I do not destroy the lamb and the kid to glut my appetite"


"the human senses are insurmountable barriers to our union….

 if I cannot inspire love, I will cause fear…."




  "...I never beheld her so enchanting as at this time..."


impatient thirst


"Thus spoke my prophetic soul"



"a hand holds the darkest light"

“Solitude was my only consolation - deep, dark, deathlike solitude.”  

Victor unbound

“There is something at work in my soul, which I do not understand.”

"My Dear Elizabeth,"

“How mutable are our feelings,
and how strange is that clinging love we have of life
even in the excess of misery!”  

"I have no doubt of seeing the animal today"






"I am alone and miserable. Only someone as ugly as I am could love me."


"My beloved sister"


"my sight was dimmed by the burning drops"


“Hateful day when I received life!'

I exclaimed in agony.
'Accursed creator!
Why did you form a monster so hideous that even you turned from me in disgust?"

Guided by a silken cord


"My Dear Mary"

"For what a minute did I see you yesterday – is this the way my beloved that we are to live till the sixth in the morning I look for you and when I awake I turn to look on you – dearest Shelley you are solitary and uncomfortable why cannot I be with you to cheer you and to press you to my heart oh my love you have no friends why then should you be torn from the only one who has affection for you – But I shall see you tonight and that is the hope that I shall live on through the day– be happy dear Shelley and think of me – why do I say this dearest & only one I know how tenderly you love me and how you repine at this absence from me – when shall we be free from fear of treachery?–
   I send you the letter I told you of from Harriet and a letter we received yesterday from fanny the history of this interview I will tell you when I come – but perhaps as it is so rainy a day Fanny will not be allowed to come at all –
   My love my own one be happy –
    I was so dreadfully tired yesterday that I was obliged to take a coach home forgive this extravagance but I am so very weak at present & I had been so agitated through the day that I was not able to stand a morning rest however will set me quite right again and I shall be quite well when I meet you this evening – will you be at the door of the coffee house at five oclock as it is d├ęsagreable to go into those places and I shall be there exactly at the time & we will go into St. Pauls where we can sit down."


"I am the assassin of those most innocent victims;

 they died by my machinations.
A thousand times would I have shed my own blood,
drop by drop,
to have saved their lives;
 but I could not, my father,
 indeed I could not sacrifice the whole human race."


"From the tortures of my own heart,

I turned to contemplate the deep and voiceless grief..."


"within the wordless chamber" 

“a hideous phantasm of a man stretched out .…
 on the working of some powerful engine,
it shows signs of life,
and stirs with an uneasy, half vital motion.”

between the corridors of life and lifeless matters

“Thus strangely are our souls constructed,
and by slight ligaments are we bound to prosperity and ruin.”