I Am at the End of America

San Francisco, April 10, 2011

I am at the end of America.

I run up Haight Street to Golden Gate Park.

I walk in circles, lost.

A random stranger, science fiction writing professor from LA, gives me a ride.

He deposits me at a bookstore in the Castro and selects surreal comic books for me to buy in order to restore my sanity. He is an angel.

I am at the end of America. Next is the Pacific Ocean.

The country is filled with the homeless, the disenfranchised.

I am told fascism can’t happen here. It only happens in Europe.


I am at the end of America.

A homeless man shares his blanket, I share a smoke with him.

He tells me, “If we didn’t have assholes we wouldn’t have shit.”

I am moving, moving, an inch away from being anybody, getting to know me.

I am at the end of America.

We are the artists. We are it. We are in flux. Cultural revolution. Where are we going? What is identity?

The world is changing.

Moving, always moving.

Movement feels right.

I have lost my identity, and I have lost my fear.

I am at the end of America.


About Maureen Burdock

Maureen Burdock was born in the Black Forest in Germany and grew up being enchanted and awed by fairy tales, witches, and magical landscapes. At the same time, her family often told stories of the war years, making her acutely aware of a divided Germany. Burdock arrived in Chicago at age seven, where she learned to navigate a foreign environment and language with the help of teachers, books, and art. Drawing, painting and writing became both communication tools and psychological means for survival. As she matured, the artist used these tools to understand her own identity and the world at large. Burdock’s current work still incorporates narrative and visual elements to probe deeply into her psyche and to explore societal divisions and disconnections. Since 2006, Burdock has been creating a series of graphic novels that deal with gender-based violence around the world. Most recently, she has been working on an animated short film. She continues to incorporate both elements of magic and political awareness into her work. Burdock currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she is working on an MFA in studio practice and an MA in Visual Critical Studies at the California College of the Arts. She facilitates Laydeez do Comics San Francisco, a comics forum weighted towards women creators, which originated in the UK. Burdock has won several awards for her graphic novel work, including high commendation by the global Freedom to Create International Competition and top prize in the Judy Chicago/Through the Flower, Feminist Artists Under Forty Competition. The artist has received critical acclaim by diverse reviewers, including articles in Marie Claire, Mumbai, India; Strip, Copenhagen, Denmark; and the online publications Lamp Project and Art Animal. She has published reviews and articles in publications and catalogs such as Graphic Novel Reporter, Art Practical, and WomanHouse v.4.0 Catalog. Several gender studies and world literature professors have adopted Burdock’s graphic novels for their classrooms, and McFarland will publish an anthology of the F Word Project in 2014. Burdock continues to exhibit her work in gallery and museum venues, and is looking forward to an exhibition of the art for her current book, Mumbi & the Long Run, at Space Station 65 Gallery in London in 2014.
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