Where text meets image. Where the visual intersects the literary. Often posting 1st drafts and editing in (almost) real time.

Month: November, 2014

Autumn, late

and helmet
I remember when she said,

I’m sorry to interrupt your relationship

With Bob Dylan.

this now


In Rome, do as the Romans do…

two figures

The tourist marvels at the intricate figures and stories on carved stone columns in Rome,

sporetwo figures

Imagining a stonemason/carver scooped up by the Roman Legions and brought as a slave with his family alongside for his ‘new’ life,


He pictures the artisan/slave at work chiselling when a small stone chip flies up hitting his eye.

sculpture and no

He lives nearby and walks home to his hut, where his wife daubs at his eye with a cloth, removing the object.


The tourist turns to go, and after walking a few seconds,


Sees a couple involved in some first aid type of situation.

trailing line

The man is wearing a camera around his neck,

slave 2

And the woman is wiping at his eye with a handkerchief.

aanew face

The tourist tells his traveling companion about this coincidence and she says ‘Maybe they’re not here.’

some sculpture

I’m remembering a trip to Italy in 2001 like it just happened.


I wasn’t originally involved in what turned out to be an Italian-Canadian art education initiative: a visual artist and a musician visiting schools in the north (near Bologna) and the south (Pozzuoli – on the coast south of Naples).


It was soon after 9-1-1 and I think somebody got cold feet.

new facetwo figures

In spite of being stressed about the idea of flying I took the advice given, such as, Are you crazy? Pass up a paid trip to Italy?

sporesome sculpture

It was of course amazing.

two new

The synchronicity of this event has puzzled me ever since.

distant past

Archival ink drawing in my Moleskin sketchbook & details of Roman sculpture (Wikipedia)

some sculpture

Exposing Utopia




Cry instead


I cry instead


Sometimes I cry instead


 Sometimes I feel like crying


 Sometimes I feel like crying so


 Sometimes I feel like crying so I


 Sometimes I feel like crying so I hate


 Sometimes I feel like crying so I hate instead.


Sometimes I feel like hating so I cry instead.


In this Theatre of the Absurd ~

Wearing my white robe like a mystery play ~

Little Dixie hangs in the air like heat ~

A clanging wagon rolls into Ferguson ~

Chains dangle ~

Big House at the bustling hemp and cotton plantations ~

Seeds of the Civil War germinate ~

Human cargo brought up from the deep south ~

Captives cross the vast ocean ~


Every shift I struggle for minimum wage ~

Swimming as fast as I can, barely afloat ~

Buying Christmas gifts at the dollar store ~

The mall feels like some kind of science fiction movie ~

Taking place inside a wooden ship ~

Who does the captain work for ~

Did Big House ever fill my pockets ~

Seeds within my civil war germinate ~

Do I hate ~

Do I cry ~

Do I expose utopia ~



I found the Klan image on Wikipedia ~ I do not claim copyright for the original photograph ~ I am recomposing original images using it under non-commercial fair use provisions for purposes of commentary or parody.



November 22, 1963

I used excerpts from my mother’s journal(s) in some of the poetry. The Super 8 footage is from Kashmir & Europe in the 1960s courtesy T. Nanavati. I remember watching the family black and white television the night of the Kennedy assassination with my mother. The haunting never left me. The Beatles had not yet arrived. The war in Vietnam, ironically enough, was just about to kick in high gear. My father spent the weekend deer hunting. Years later, reading Robert Bly’s Iron John, this hit me like a sledgehammer. Although I view the event through a political prism I choose to deal with it in the context of mythic time.


Director: Steven McCabe
Director of Photography: Eric Gerard
Editor: Cliff Caines
Chanting: Sandra Phillips
Electronic/ambient music: DreamSTATE
Narration: Lynn Harrigan & Tanya Nanavati
Performers: Preethi Gopinath/Tanya Nanavati/Nicole Pillar/Paula Skimin
Poetry: Steven McCabe
Sound & online: Konrad Skręta


Starry, Starry Snow

starry, starry, snow

I saw Vincent walking down my street.

He said, ‘I’m cold.’

I said, ‘You’re not alone.’

He said, ‘Finally.’

starry starry snow & vincent
Phone camera: Toronto street

NASA space image

 Vincent Van Gogh: ‘Self-Portrait with Straw Hat’

Paris: Summer, 1887

Oil on Canvas

The Detroit Institue of Arts

vincent 3

The God Who Only Knows Four Words by Hafiz

dance dance wherever





Has known God,

z28-1 (dragged)z14

Not the God of names,

dance book 7 1

Not the God of don’ts,


Not the God who ever does


Anything weird,

dance book12

But the God who only knows four words


And keeps repeating them, saying:

new yellow

“Come dance with Me.”

dance light three


wearable blue copy


ancient egyptian

Translated by Daniel Ladinsky

collage 5

One summer a few years ago (maybe more than a few – the time seems to fly) I created wearable paintings (acrylic paint on light canvas) with young dancers. I marvelled at how they adapted to the not-so-pliable fabric enclosing their movements. Like watching a pack of playing or Tarot Cards in motion. Swirling angles and flashes of colour. Only found a few photographs – hence the repetition in design.

softly 60s stylez10

Double Vision

frame ho chi minh

The left hand and the right hand begin working,


Working to create double vision,

new fire h

 Perceptualizing the miracle, painting the town red.

einstein einstein

Shrouded within a shimmering portal, same as before,

frame john lennon

& Beneath the reflection a mirrored dream of innocence.

frame sample

In the innocence of mirrored images a mechanism round as a marble

frame hedy lamarr

Rises and falls. Shattering above twin, holy worlds. Same as before.

strawberries final

Within this terrible possibility perhaps lies the intrigue,

simone b

An intrigue beyond failure,

frame configuration black windows

Beyond the post-modern landscape any failure is a reassurance.

frame frames

The reassurance of a terrible possibility.

frame A Babel by Peter Brueghel the Elder

Mystery centres wrestle with the impending implosion,

frame technicians

Endeavoring round the clock using the latest technology,

frame latest technology

Such as sound in the centre of trees,

frame configuration white windows

Processing data, round as a marble,

frame ancient mirror

Rising like a feather in the breeze,

frame keystone cops

Until night with the force of an atomic blast

frame keystone B

 Arrives, inspiring the melancholy of the absurd, forever.

frame brueghel upsidd down

The images above were taken from the internet. I do not own the copyright and have recomposed them for purposes of non-commercial parody or commentary under fair use provisions. The personalities are Ho Chi Minh, Einstein’s brain, young John Lennon, actress and inventor Hedy Lamarr, author Simon de Beauvoir, and Pieter Bruegel the Elder’s 16th Century painting Tower of Babel. Film stills are from The Keystone Cops. The mirror is Egyptian, from the 18th Century, held by the Brooklyn Museum. The computer scientist ‘unknown.’

To Such Belong the Kingdom of the Heavens: A Visual Essay on The 11th Hour of The 11th Day of The 11th Month (Remembrance Day)

a m l k j i h g f e d c b

As I understand the accepted wisdom Jesus was a peacemaker. Reflecting upon Remembrance Day one cannot help but think of how children (and civilians) are affected by war. I have incorporated the biblical quotes/visual references into this digital essay as a way of contemplating the historical workings of religion towards war.

one four

‘Jesus however said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them; for it is to those who are childlike that the Kingdom of the Heavens belongs.’ – Weymouth New Testament, Matthew 19:14


‘Blessed are the Peacemakers…’ – Matthew 5:9


Images of Christ from the Ravenna Mosaics – a public domain image from Wikipedia Commons.


Credit: Photos of children from the online collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art released for non-commercial adaption. I have used images from the great photographers Ansel Adams, Walker Evans,  Johan Hayemeyer. If I have misunderstood the terms of conditions attached to these images I will remove the digital collages from online publication.



, Autumn Morning


poema 7

Poema 20

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.

Write, for example, “The night is starry

and the stars are blue and shiver in the distance.”

The night wind revolves in the sky and sings.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.

I loved her, and sometimes she loved me too.

Through nights like this one I held her in my arms.

I kissed her again and again under the endless sky.

She loved me, sometimes I loved her too.

How could one not have loved her great still eyes.

Tonight I can write the saddest lines.

To think that I do not have her. To feel that I have lost her.

To hear the immense night, still more immense without her.

And the verse falls to the soul like dew to the pasture.

What does it matter that my love could not keep her.

The night is starry and she is not with me.

This is all. In the distance someone is singing. In the distance.

My soul is not satisfied that it has lost her.

My sight tries to find her as though to bring her closer.

My heart looks for her, and she is not with me.

The same night whitening the same trees.

We, of that time, are no longer the same.

I no longer love her, that’s certain, but how I loved her.

My voice tried to find the wind to touch her hearing.

Another’s. She will be another’s. As she was before my kisses.

Her voice, her bright body. Her infinite eyes.

I no longer love her, that’s certain, but maybe I love her.

Love is so short, forgetting is so long.

Because through nights like this one I held her in my arms

my soul is not satisfied that it has lost her.

Though this be the last pain that she makes me suffer

and these the last verses that I write for her.

Pablo Neruda

poema 7