Thursday, October 18, 2007

I haven't gone to sleep yet, so for me it's still Wednesday...

So I found this book in the library called Letters to Five Artists in which poet John Wain (not to be confused with the cowboy with a homophonic name) writes letters (poems) to different artists. The artists include two visual artists, a musician, and two poets. Wain's poems vary drastically in style--likely due to his appropriate responses to each individual artist. I like the concept of writing to someone whose work you admire, because in doing so you are collaborating with their art. While he isn't the greatest poet, I think we can benefit from his METHOD of collaboration.

Here's an excerpt from his poem "Moondust" for Victor Neep, painter and metal worker:

old mangles
old gas cookers, limbs
of bicycles that died of old age
rest by the shifting sea, or on the mountain
content and motionless
bathed in that light
content to have arrived:
content to be, what all those wheeling years
they were becoming:
sentinels of time and loneliness,
emblems of all that is unreachable

Because she asks no questions, because her face
Holds light and only light, calm-spreading, free
Of all those interrogatives that hold us
Hot-tempered captives when the sun climbs high:
Because she is a disc of visual silence
Dramatic only in her suddenness
When breaking from the clouds, she throws her silver
On grass, on waves that rake the waves of shingle,
On rock and waterfall and moving sheep
So that all objects cast contented shadows,
Not like the shadows of day, not question marks
Crossing each gesture with a grimace of doubt.
The moon's shadows are of darkness only,
fulfilled, contained, an experience of shape.

She holds our violence in a steady frame
burnished amid pure darkness. At Stonehenge,
the victim died when dawn lit up the sky,
splashing the stone with fire that sang, Destroy.

No comments: