poemimage

Where text meets image. Where the visual intersects the literary.

Category: Drawing

In the Temple of the Cauldron of the Garden of the Sun

I did a new painting. With acrylic paint and water-soluble graphite. The size is 30″ X 30″. The day after it was finished I made three changes.

Working the woman’s body it became a tree body with a bird. To break up the vertical line of the cartouche I added a bird (looks like a blue jay) entering from the left. To delineate the ‘leaf-flower’ zapping the tadpole-comet-sperm sphere with its tongue I gave it a serpent’s eye, added a white line to the tongue and reworked the sphere.

A friend of mine from Romania refers to the accordion book above as a ‘cartouche.’ I feel like an archeologist discussing the cartouche in my painting. This cartouche contains a number of diagonals that lead the eye to her arm. The white of the cartouche jumps from her arm to the white of her face.

These photos are not professional quality but they do show decisions about content and composition.

In ‘real life’ the painting is not quite as turquoise but it’s also more vibrant with texture and depth. It shines brilliantly.

I will return to a regular posting schedule on this blog soon. My plan is to create linocut prints and small paintings on paper to go with poetry. My computer is slow now, older, and not syncing well with WordPress. I will put Photoshop files on a thumb drive to increase computing power.

 

I sent five ink drawings to a poet.

For the cover of her book with a theme – dreams, running throughout the powerful, prophetic poems.

I selected the drawings from two sketchbooks filling simultaneously, slowly, sometimes on the subway, sometimes in a cafe.

I work in these sketchbooks, as well as accordion sketchbooks, on and off, sometimes obsessively & intricately,  sometimes less so.

I love ink drawing and the history of ink drawings – the contrast of line, design. To be honest I don’t want to do ink drawings, it’s inescapable & too pleasurable. An addiction of sorts.

My early heroes were Aubrey Beardsley and later Jan Toorop.

Today I find myself mesmerized by the line of Pict or Runic art and the heavier B&W contrasts in lino & woodcuts.

I have a book from the early 1900s & the author is railing against modernity in ink drawings.

He’s right about traditional, technical skill but quite misses the point.

The quest to return to what was lost in our origins is not determined by accuracy in depiction.

But rather seeing the spirit of the thing.

Or what we imagine is the spirit of the thing.

 

 

Drawing 14 assumes new form

After I broke (shattered!) my ankle I began drawing for long periods in bed.

I used a Sharpie marker on lined paper and numbered the drawings.

Sometimes I titled the drawings and indicated how I might use them, a linocut or a painting.

Drawing 14 broke free of its mooring and reappeared after traveling through several rooms.

I recreated Drawing 14 using digital tools.

1 + 4 = 5. Some people say 5 is a dynamic number of change. An indicator of flux, of positive movement,

& some things never reappear & you realize there might be something else, down in the roots, you need to want more.

And you experience both mystery and loss

while wearing wings and antlers.

Wherever those came from.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reposed in Flight by Ned Baeck

Basement bright with skin

shows dark, rapt faces.

They hold him

in their hearts and brains.

Someone whispered the world

is not worth becoming evil for –

On the ceiling, which is the maiden mother’s floor,

they pound, and pause, and pound again.

Blood pulsing in their fists,

the pierce of loathing under their ribs.

In a shadowed mezzanine

below the conscious mind,

they gnaw on river fish,

direct you to the wrong people,

put glitter in their eyes,

control the atmosphere,

arrange stillborn thoughts in old places.

Later they will say you brought down

the old, dull, rusted sword

with your own hands – and you did –

on the samovar that hid her hand

and the bed where she bared herself.

Motionless,

bird reposed in flight,

love for whose sake everything, murderous

and merciful, is done –

It’s so quiet now,

vouchsafed to a world of sullen depravity,

a few crumbs of dust for the broom.

The true operation of your mind – follow it –

 

Ned Baeck lives in Vancouver.

His poems have recently appeared in untethered, The Continuist and Sewer Lid.

His first full-length collection of poems is forthcoming from Guernica.

Morning Morning by Tuli Kupferberg

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Morning morning
Feel so lonesome in the morning
Morning morning
Morning brings me grief

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Sunshine and the sunshine
Sunshine laughs upon my face
& the glory of the growing
Puts me in my rotting place

xx2a

Evening evening
Feel so lonesome in the evening
Evening evening
Evening brings me grief

xx5

Moon shine moon shine
Moon shine drugs the hills with grace
& the secret of the shining
Seeks to break my simple face

xx6

Nighttime nighttime
Kills the blood upon my cheek
Nighttime nighttime
Does not bring me to relief

xx8

Starshine and the starshine
Feel so loving in the starshine
Starshine starshine
Darling kiss me as I weep

xx2

Morning Morning written by Tuli Kuferberg & recorded by The Fugs on their album The Fugs.

xx3a

The Fugs (1966) is the second album from The Fugs.

xx7

Historical info & album downloads can be found at The Fugs official website: http://www.thefugs.com/history2.html

xx6b

Morning Morning by The Fugs: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dM8jpbaw3A

xx8

I make no claim whatsoever to these lyrics, whose copyright, I assume, remains with the author & Fugs founding member, the late Tuli Kupferberg. I simply wish to share these beautiful words & music.

xx2

Lyrics found at Lyrics.com as submitted by jinny.

z11morning morningmorning morningmorning morning

If Yeats Was a Bicycle

not duchamp final

Not Duchamp…

2 again

Not Gertrude Stein…

not duchamp 3

Not cave art…

not duchamp 4

Not Klee…

not duchamp 5

Not Mary Poppins…

1 again

Not Yeats.

not ducamp 6

Well…possibly. With one of his gyres. Formulating A Vision.

not duchamp 7

http://www.yeatsvision.com/yeats.html

not duchamp final

Sugar by Sheila Stewart

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1.
Dust rises off the hot low veldt.  Vast sugarcane estates: the only irrigated
land.   Wide lush green fields sprout a million tiny sprinklers. The cane is
ready, burnt to make it easier to cut. Flame sweeps the fields, fierce as a
forest fire. The air black soot, a flurry of ash falls miles away, drifts in
doorways, a line of soot runs across the table in our classroom Monday
morning, mirroring the crack in the roof’s peak.

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2.
How I love a dusting of sugar over a slab of chocolate cake, a script of
raspberry sauce.

aaaa

3.
Give me brown sugar, white sugar, cubes and icing sugar, caster sugar,
sugar daddy, sugar mummy, sugar baby, sugar bear, sugar-beet, sugar
bowl, sugared and sugary, sugar plum fairy, Shake Sugaree.

avery

4.
Long, open cane trucks, chains along the sides, drive past the auto-
wreck’s Jesus is Coming, into the refugee settlement, collect workers
early in the morning, return them dirty, tired at day’s end. The cane cutters
earn a little more, dressed in layers for protection, sooty as chimney
sweeps. Our students tell us, Cane can cut you. Snake can get you in the
cane.  

spoon sum

5.
Monthly rations: maize, beans, salt, sometimes dried fish, and a little
sugar.

suncube

6.
One more lump of sugar, please.

kandinsky

7.
Simon learned English fast: homeland, refugee, truck. Hot and cold. Love
and hate. Past, present, future.
Simon cut cane. He told us of his last trip
on the back of a cane truck. Returning to the settlement one black night,
the truck broke down at the side of the road. People got out, lay down and slept, waiting for another truck. Simon watched a lorry full of oranges
crash into the cane truck, knocking it over onto the sleeping workers,
pinning the dead and injured to the ground. The sugary smell of oranges
but none to eat. The truck carried on, cutting through the night taking the oranges safely to Durban.

intersect

Sheila Stewart has two poetry collections, The Shape of a Throat (Signature Editions) and A Hat to Stop a Train (Wolsak and Wynn). She co-edited The Art of Poetic Inquiry (Backalong Books). Sheila’s poetry has been recognized by such awards as the gritLIT Contest, the Pottersfield Portfolio Short Poem Contest, and the Scarborough Arts Council Windows on Words Award. She teaches in Equity Studies, Women and Gender Studies, and the Writing Centre at New College, University of Toronto. ‘Sugar’ is from The Shape of a Throat.

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Faux-Beat Anti-War Poem by Luther Blissett

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I have seen the greatest minds of my generation riding vacuum cleaners in the sky above Syria. George Washington’s wooden occult teeth clitter clatter in the rubble filled streets. General Sherman’s occult army empties another town on his flaming march to the sea.

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Jet-diving vacuum roar sucks up intricate silver jewelry dropped upon/ into the embroidered rug. Loot! Booty! This should be worth something! Dropping beside/ into delicately curved brass dishes of fragrant food flavoured with aromatic spices. A wedding photograph framed within the ancient yew.

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Great-grandmother’s sacred water-well dripping twisted rags in Springtime. Pawn shop lights blinking. Pawns on the azure-tiled cafe floor tipped beneath an abandoned chessboard. Dripping ruptured pipes drip, once it was every minute, rusted, caustic water drops staining the almost (e8=Q).  Staining the almost.

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See the fleet footed family fly beneath gleaming sedan billboards into the shade shadow of a brighter tomorrow. See the family scurry hurry parallel rust-flaked punctured pipes into the caustic, occult ceiling of a brighter tomorrow. A gleaming tomorrow/ flee flee Washington’s wanton wooden teeth.

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Swing low sweet chariot with minus reflective surface. Aim from the plastic-wrapped heart in the gleaming plastic bowl in the chilled gleaming refrigerator darkened by a dead bulb.

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Luther Blissett is a mythical figure in contemporary European art history. He works on multiple media platforms cross-referencing a multiplicity of artistic disciplines concerning identity, the body, society and the psyche.

bjj

 

A Small Experimental Drawing (and the law of intended consequences)

experimental

After visiting the JMW Turner exhibition for a second time at the Art Gallery of Ontario and wading through the busloads of students and groups of seniors from retirement/nursing homes I realized how fortunate I had been on Friday night when the place was half deserted. Possibly half full.

Detail 1

Again I am reminded of Turner’s grey. Vanishing yet insistent. Drawing the eye. Drawing the eye into. Possibly even halfway in.

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Sometimes one is drawn by the air of an unexplored territory. Or summoned by insistent mystery. Summoned halfway into a vanishing mystery.

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I focus on the brilliant whites in Turner’s work, and escape the crush, wandering into a drawing exhibition pulled from the print & drawing vaults.

detail 15

Three of the works refresh anew my dilemma. I think of the Judge’s black robes.

detail 8

 I join a raiding party. The Captain’s name is Font. His horse is called Halfway.

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The raiding party does not solve my crisis. Nevertheless I raise the end of a burnt stick from the fire.

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Marking the edge of the law. My declaration marking the edge of the law.

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There is no natural boundary to the embedded law of intended consequence.

ink amber 4

Another edge must roll it back to where it came from. Or swallow it. Leaving its bones along the trail.

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The edge of the sun!

The ambers, and whites, and Naples Yellow in Turner’s sky, radiating with silent resolution.

amber ink sun 100

Let me tell you a story about Naples Yellow.

ink amber 9

I visited an artist one night many years ago.

There are many stories to tell about that night but I will tell you this one.

When I was leaving, at the bottom of the stairs, the artist began talking about Naples Yellow.

And did not stop.

ink amber

The artists, the art periods, the art movements involved with Naples Yellow.

The secret uses of Naples Yellow, The powers of Naples Yellow, the magic of Naples Yellow.

ink amber 8

Perhaps Naples Yellow can solve my dilemma.

amber ink sun 100

 

Mizzle «Garúa» by Cristina Castello (Translated by Pierre L’Abbé)

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I immigrated to the Earth draped in silence
Written on a reflection, a path to the word
I brought my fertile voice, my thornless offering,
a calm mizzle in the depth of the eyes

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I found a shelter of swamp and nettles
A Power that ignited the blood of children,
I saw men like wolves, I saw angel wolves
And a brackish deluge of moribund dreams

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Each day, more beings broken and destroyed
Cut to size, torn up, broken, killed
While Goya, Beethoven and Balzac
Affirm that life is reinforced in each Being

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An immigrant in the potent kernel of art
I curse the cemeteries and the ashes, and I remain
I remain until the foliage of men
Nurtures the roots and reinvents the world

starfield copy

Cristina Castello is an Argentinian poet and journalist now living in France. Her work is committed to peace and beauty against all social injustices. Her poems are always a commitment to the dignity of life, beauty and freedom. They have been translated into several languages. Her books include, Soif, (L’Harmattan 2004); Orage, (Bod 2009),Ombre (Trames 2010) and “Le chant des sirènes” / “El canto de las sirenas” (Chemins de plume, 2012).

vvvovo

Translated by Pierre L’Abbé from the Spanish original and from the French translation of Pedro Vianna

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Pierre L’Abbe is a Toronto translator, publisher, ebook designer and author of both poetry and short story collections.

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