poemimage

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

Tag: loss

July 10, 2013

I am working on a new GIF to accompany 5 lines from Lyon by Pierre L’Abbe. The stanza he sent me is so evocative I keep creating new images. So a few more days until I post that.

In the meantime, in a file folder, I found a poem & drawing from July 10, 2013. Close to eight years ago. My dryer was broken, though not the washing machine, so I went to the laundromat with bags of wet clothing. I brought a pen and paper.

The memory of writing a poem in the laundromat impacts me more than re-reading the poem. The poem touches on loss. It was a big deal at the time. As big as the universe. The drawing seems to be about the future. And loss as well.

He examines something, a memory, maybe it belonged to somebody, while his body transforms. He’s growing wings made of fossils or maybe a spiked spinal column has departed. Disappearing. His tears fall channeled into ancient patterns. Or maybe those channels teach him new patterns. Giving him fuel. Leaves, or flames, grow from his eyes. A drawing about vision.

A quickly sketched ink drawing might express many secrets. Something unknown always at work.

GIF Experiments: 16 (Take a Photograph of What You Love)

I divided 190 images (manipulated in Photoshop) used in these three GIFS into three groups – arbitrarily. Many were repetitive and yet many unique. I sought to give each GIF its own visual rhythm. Then I added a phrase to the third GIF: Take a photograph of what you love.

I reworked and juxtaposed two medieval paintings, a photograph of Jacqueline Kennedy in Dallas, and a photograph of Serge Gainsbourg & Jane Birkin.

Developing Images

I scanned an ink drawing done in 2010. I did hundreds of smaller and larger drawings for an exhibition in 2011 of 66 works. This one didn’t make the final cut although I don’t know why.

For much of Monday and half of Tuesday this week I created digital manipulations in Photoshop of the original drawing.

Much of my knowledge of Photoshop comes from exploring but I was fortunate to take a digital design class with an expert.

He was preparing the class for careers in advertising or editorial design. I was the oldest person in the class. The others were all whizzes with software and keyboard shortcuts, etc… I was like a farmer with a mule.

The original drawing has now given birth to 122 images. I scanned the original at 1200 dpi so the images are sharp and succinct. Take them down to 300 dpi to print a book, maybe add text – or leave them as digital collages. Somehow around #80 or so this figure emerged, imagined as the young woman from a poem (written this week) named Mary.

One, of course, should let the work sit and later evaluate it but for now I am feeling none-too-precious about words and ideas. I just might leave it raw and imperfect.

The image of the cross to accompany the Vosnesensky poem I am Goya came from rearranging the comics or graphic novel-type panels. A lot of those in the final 25/122.

I realized after posting I am Goya that I had also posted this poem in poemimage on the last day of November in 2012. Around that time my great journey into loss was underway. I survived. Relating this work by Vosnesensky (& knowing its monumental & historical subject matter) to personal psyche is perhaps not trivial. The word ‘bookends’ comes to mind.

Ruminations on Discarding a Drafting Table

Was it a mistake to throw out the old drafting table during my decluttering blitzkreig with its thousands of hours of receptivity to mark making, creating & colouring upon a flat screen opening to the unknown through seasons of catastrophe, celebration, and hope

Only to discover new ones at the same price, half the size, rickety, like stacking plastic toy soldiers until they fall to the floor beside the laundry and a coupon expired

Standing half as tall – is this how people live today – cramped / like ceilings pressing at odd angles, like too much irony or TV news or variety shows with varieties of one crop farming

In the city I discarded what I could squeeze into a hole, after it made itself known, who could fail to notice this hole, brazenly tapping at the doorway like trance drumming & insisting on action

As loud as a hole can be without attracting the attention of other shapes competing for psychic food although that might be a personification best for allegory or proverb

& Even vibrations (especially vibrations!) passing into wood or metal created in the right spirit, I’m sure it was the right spirit, know they are the right size for the hole, the circle, the absence, the sun

Though saying goodbye to memories vanishing into & beyond the hole might be a mistake, if there are mistakes in the ecology of memory and in the shadow of labour – no I am sure there cannot be, and a goodbye is never a forever, yes it often is

In this new world, either squatting, or hiding from the enemy, or working within form shrinking from moisture or heat or time, one realizes a newer price will have to be paid for a full size, it’s no longer one size fits all, it’s no longer all at all

One might reclaim discarded memories in the hole though they float away forever, but the idea of agreeing, I think, is to create another hole, a flourishing courier system arriving in the future at the other doorway, or now, and how can any mistake be made while awaiting couriered delivery

Of it all & with a great sadness, goodbye

Cathy, I’m lost,

Cathy, I’m lost, I said though I knew she was sleeping
And I’m empty and aching and I don’t know why

(Gore Vidal, Tennessee Williams, JFK)

lyrics Paul Simon, America

and we did have joy

When roadblocks appear.

Roads go to funny places.

One returns to a place.

I remember you burned the soles of your feet during coal walking at the weekend seminar.

Somebody stole your expensive Turkish sandals and replaced them with flip flops.

You didn’t stop walking.

We discovered a comet fallen to the sidewalk.

And then a colourful one.

You were afraid it would burn your feet.

You said my skin had cracked.

I touched my arm. It felt

Like a fallen column in the library at Alexandria.

Though not as old as a comet.

As old as the sidewalks put in after WW2.

On the roads that go to funny places.

Where you walked and kept going

After I stopped.

*

and

we

did

have

joy

*

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Look by Rumi

inky blue rumi

Look as long as you can
at the friend you love
No matter whether that friend is moving away from you
or coming back toward you.

new double rumi

To the best of my knowledge this version of Rumi’s Look is a translation by Coleman Barks.