poemimage

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

Category: Poetic & Visual Narrative

edge, ledge & hedge

The proportional yet abstract face made of shapes like cactus or flowers,

perhaps a mask in commedia dell’arte,

or a book describing the famous wonders of the world,

thin as a snowflake, balanced on one edge,

tipping to one side diagonally & dampened by droplets

sliding down a stained blurry windowpane

pooling on the ledge, osmosis dampening

cream-coloured paper, flecked & rippled like grief or papyrus –

inscriptions of blue ink (messages of mysterious flavour)

to devour, to decipher (imagine the Hanging Gardens of Babylon)

& heaving your bag of magical tools to your shoulder

building a a sentient tunnel

disappeared beneath the waterfall of a viridian hedge foaming upon the lawn,

blotted by twilight & in the jasmine-scented shade shadowy moss

envelops a stone, upright, sunk into fertile soil &

inscribed with symbols of a fertile flavour –

I’m not being sentimental.

Face: mouth, nose, eye, and (tilted) eyebrow.

page 68

I opened the frozen container of orange juice with a can opener. Tasted the frozen orange juice crystals and pulled the razor-sharp, metal lid slowly out of my mouth. Blood poured over my lips. I remembered it was sharp. The guy who told me Picts painted blue symbols all over their bodies said the mouth healed faster than any other part of the body. We were listening to Pink Floyd’s Several Species of Small Furry Animals Gathered Together in a Cave and Grooving With a Pict. I said, ‘What is a Pict?’

from my book Meme-Noir (2019)

paper

The thing about working on paper is that one touches-feeling the otherworldly textures of this very world. A reminder of the gift, the circle, one has been given.

One can imagine glimmers of this very world.

As tree roots signal compassion & nurture while snaking out and spiralling into the secret dark soil. As their compassion reverberates like ripples in water.

As a forest of vertical bodies reach skyward. As they etch circular rings in their wooden hearts. As they record circles in orbit around the sun. A living symbol of experience. The experience of this earth.

The thing about working on paper is that one performs mark-making enveloped within sacred heaving breath. As delicate breath-shadows dance beneath sunlight falling like holograms. Like a ballet. The story of archetypal tree as mother. How easy to forget.

As paper absorbs watery emotions, even eyesight – like daylight, starlight or candlelight, received intuitively. Quietly the visceral eclipse. How easy to forget.

One can imagine the tree like an iceberg with secret rooms. Multi-dimensional and unknown. Concealed.

Offering utilitarian circle & body. Of this very world. Like an animal. Like sky. Like an eye. One does not forget. As this very world does not forget. As the animal, sky, and eye do not forget.

Bird Vision, a painting on textured watercolour paper

Harrison Street (3 GIFs)

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A summer art project: Sculpture, ‘The Cosmos’ created with youth. You are seeing half of the sculpture. Plaster gauze, rope, acrylic paint. Also balloons. I don’t know why exactly I superimposed this image over a photograph of Harrison Street. Perhaps curvilinear shapes address time. Or the shapes are somehow ancestral. Perhaps such ‘continual vegetal designs’ balance the angularity of buildings while adding human dimensions of roundness and multi-dimensionality. I don’t know. It just seemed the thing to do.

It Was a Secret

Giotto painted the stars bleeding out his fingertips.

Caroline Coon did a painting of Christine Keeler

As did Pauline Boty.

I fell into the world without a shaman

Somewhere the world is not yet what it will become.

Photo Charles Hackbarth

I rented a tiny apartment next door to the girl in white shorts

whose brother, or maybe step-father, has a hook for a hand.

I wake to the sound of birds.

My mother worked near a famous intersection during the war –

music in the nightclubs vibrated echoes all night long.

Somebody said he remembered her –

in a flat boat gliding through the reeds.

Oak trees cast shadows across divided pools

designed in the curvilinear shapes of a Celtic eagle’s head –

I remember fish in deep water

I didn’t want to fall in –

going home from Eddie’s house.

Eddie spread catsup on white bread and smoothed it with a butter knife.

The architect said it was a secret.

Grey Concrete Sidewalk

I finished four deadlines yesterday I began in February when I finished my 33′ X 5′ painting on paper. Now I can do something about promoting this painting.

final section, Druidica, 2022, Steven McCabe, 33′ X 5′ – mixed media on paper

The amount of work I have done in the last year makes me feel half my age.

I remember when I used to work in schools.

I went for a walk after the rain. Garbage washes over the street in familiar colours.

I see a painting in the tiny art gallery window but when I photograph it clouds appear.

Is this a store security camera monitor? I would splice the discarded ‘evidence’ into an art film.

The Classic Candy Store sponsored a free giveaway of Moirs chocolate at the local (it has been resurrected) theatre in 1927. One day my shadow will vanish forever like a chocolate company.

December 5th, 1927
December 5,1927

I used a Sharpie marker in my sketchbook on the subway. The lady in white does not see me. I only see her in the photograph.

I only notice the Celtic manuscript in front of the drugstore parking lot when it begins to fade.

In the elevator at the medical clinic a Taj Mahal-like shape eats away at the cheap paneling.

Now I can do something about promoting this painting.

detail- Druidica, 2022, Steven McCabe, 33′ X 5′ – mixed media on paper

When the ice melts all at once…

One operates in black & white (without chiaroscuro)

When the ice melts all at once…

One documents an operation of the psyche

When the ice melts all at once…

One experiences the falling apart gather speed

When the ice melts all at once…

One experiences psyche igniting catharsis

Documented previously HOW?

When the ice melts all at once…

Ice laughter shines like silver

delicately brutal

full as the moon

delivering a blanket of shadowy

chiaroscuro.

One believes they have documented catharsis when in fact catharsis is about to rear its head. Puzzling.
Exhibition late 2011
poetry video shown at exhibition

Detail from a painting completed a decade after this exhibition.

Night Falls

You paint your eyes with infinity

I am becoming a tree

The age difference visible for all to see.

Finite wood struggles in the human heart

Radiating rings enclose the wooden heart

Flowers of infinity bloom

Night falls as it must.

You paint your eyes with springtime at midnight beneath the radiating moon

Flowers of infinity bloom.

I aim for the centre of the human heart

For I am now a tree

For now I am a tree

The age difference visible for all to see.

Contemplating the Fate of the Druids While Thinking of Something Else