Anne Carson in her apartment on
avenue de l'Esplanade, Plateau
Mont-Royal, October 1998

Before our session began, Anne showed
me her paintings of South American
volcanoes and laughed at their limited
palettes, explaining that she had only
had three or four colours of paint with her
when she painted them. The colours
were fine for volcanoes, but must have
posed a challenge for her llamas. A
drawing she had made of Gertrude Stein
oversaw our relaxed discussion of art,
her map of ancient Greece, and her
family's summer cabin in Ontario. After a
while, I suggested that we start taking
pictures. Anne agreed readily, then
paused indecisively for a moment, and
told me about the distress a recent
portrait session for
The New York Times
had caused her. Then she placed a
surprising restriction on our shoot. "You
can only take one picture of my face,"
she said. It was stated in such a
matter-of-fact way that it sounded almost
like an ordinary limitation. When her
running-shoed feet went briefly
en pointe,
the one picture was made.