Living with the Truth Stranger than Fiction This Is Not About What You Think Milligan and Murphy Making Sense

Thursday, 7 August 2008

Poetry and art (part two)

Painting is mute poetry and poetry is speaking painting. – Simonides of Kos, 6th century B.C.

Poetry first (illustrations and collaborations)

In the last section we ended on poetry inspired by art. It can work the other way round, of course, Charles Demuth's 1928 painting, I Saw the Figure 5 in Gold is based on the 1920 poem by William Carlos Williams, 'The Great Figure'.


Among the rain
and lights
I saw the figure 5
in gold
on a red
fire truck
to gong clangs
siren howls
and wheels rumbling
through the dark city

Constable's famous painting, The Hay Wain, is in fact a painting about a poem. I may be one written by Constable himself (now lost) about another painting he completed a few months earlier entitled, 'The Hay Wain'. I've also read that the painting may have been inspired by the poem 'The Task' by W. Cowper:

There from the sun-burnt hay-fields, homeward creeps
The loaded Wain; while, lighten’d of its charge,
The wain that meets it passes swiftly by;
The boorish driver leaning o’er his team,
Vociferous, and impatient of delay. (Lines 295-99)

While Meditations, Frank O'Hara's first collection of poetry, was being prepared for publication, he was approached by a publisher about collaborating with artist Larry Rivers. The resulting project, a series of twelve lithographs titled Stones, was produced between 1957 and 1960. For the work, Rivers and O'Hara worked directly on the stones from which the lithographs were made. O'Hara had to write backward so the text would be readable in the finished lithograph

Frank O'Hara, A City Winter and Other Poems,
with two drawings by Larry Rivers. 1951

In 1993, artist Jane Hammond commissioned John Ashbery to create a set of titles that would act as catalysts for her work. The sixty paintings Hammond created in response to Ashbery’s titles are collected in The Ashbery Collaboration, published in 2002 by Cleveland Center for Contemporary Art. Judith Stein writes on detail about the project at BNet.

Of course the more common coming together of words and art is the often underappreciated art of book illustration. When I recently reviewed Rachel Fox's poetry collection I compared her to Libby Houston and referenced Houston's second collection, Plain Clothes. What I didn't mention is that Plain Clothes is illustrated by her husband, Mal Dean who did a lot of book illustrations; his cartoons, drawings and paintings have also been published separately.

Libby Houston, Plain Clothes,
with illustrations by Mal Dean. 1971

It's certainly not the first poetry collection I've seen with black and white drawings incorporated. To be honest I never gave it much thought in the past. It's like walking into some waiting room and there happens to be a print on the wall; it's just there.

I've never considered asking anyone to illustrate any of my poems but some editors in the past have done. Here's an example from a magazine called Works. I couldn't see a date on it but the poem dates from 1987. (He also removed the dedication – that annoyed me).


I circumcised my heart for her.
It lay bare and bled for days.
But after a while it turned hard.

I still said those familiar things
because I'd always said them and
once they I said them to you
but I don't know if they're true.

(For M.)

The question, and I obviously don't have the answer, is: was the art created to go with the poem or did he just have a few pictures lying around and that one seemed (to him) to be the best fit? I don't think it goes at all.

There are many issues here. Does a poem need illustration? What happens if the wrong illustration is put with the poem? Does it ruin it in some way?

On his website Gene T. adds photographs to a number of Robert Frost poems including 'The Road Not Taken'. This is the picture he uses:

Now Gene comes across as a well meaning guy. And he's gone to a lot of bother to try and get it right. The photo was taken on the Robert Frost Farm, in Derry, New Hampshire where Frost lived from 1900 to 1911. The thing is, the image of the crossroads came to Frost after that and this is confirmed by letter a he wrote to Susan Hayes Ward on February 10, 1912:

Two lonely cross-roads that themselves cross each other I have walked several times this winter without meeting or overtaking so much as a single person on foot or on runners. The practically unbroken condition of both for several days after a snow or a blow proves that neither is much travelled.

I don’t think the image is right myself. It's not what I have in my head but has any harm been done? I don't think so but I don't need a photograph to appreciate the imagery of the poem in fact if I'm honest I don't actually visualise any crossroads. The word 'crossroads' and the connotations attached to that word exist without any specific image. Hmm… interesting.

Poetry that looks like art (concrete poetry / typographic poetry)

Concrete poetry is defined as:

…poetry in which the typographical arrangement of words is as important in conveying the intended effect as the conventional elements of the poem, such as meaning of words, rhythm, rhyme and so on.

At least that's what Wikipedia says and it's not especially helpful. I found a better description of concrete poetry by Dan Waber:

Concrete poets spend so much time looking at the physical substance of language that they find they can't help looking for the physical substance of language in places where most people – and most poets – never think to look.

The human brain seems hardwired, no matter what, for pattern recognition and for metaphor making. All good poetry is actively engaged in the latter. All good concrete poetry actively engages both. – Minimalist Concrete Poetry

Okay that's a bit better. In Theory of Concrete Poetry (1975) its central argument states (in part):

…concrete poetry begins by taking into account graphic space as a structural agent, qualified space; spatio-temporal space, in place of merely temporal-lineal development; thence the importance of the idea of the ideogram… - The Currents of Concretism

Defining concrete poetry is proving a difficult thing but I found this wee list by Ariadne Unst which I found helpful, if a little repetitive:

  • If you remove the form of the poem, you weaken the poem.
  • In some (though not all) Concrete Poems, the form contains so much significant meaning of the poem that, if you remove the form of the poem, you destroy the poem.
  • The arrangement of letters and words creates an image that offers the meaning visually.
  • The white space of the page can be a significant part of the poem.
  • Such poems can include a combination of lexical and pictorial elements.
  • The physical arrangement in a Concrete Poem can provide a cohesion that the actual words lack. This allows a poem to ignore standard syntax, and logical sequencing.
  • While such poetry is predominantly experienced as visual poetry, some concrete poetry is sound poetry. In general, concrete poetry attempts to give its audience the more immediate experience of art that is achieved by viewers of art or hearers of music. –

Why do they all have to be so damn wordy? Here's my list:

  • Concrete poetry is an artistic expression of written language.
  • Concrete poets make designs out of letters and words.
  • Concrete poetry is a poem in the shape of its subject or something related to the subject of the poem.
  • The shape of the poem is far more important than with normal linear poetry.
  • Even though the visual pattern may catch our eye, it is the language itself that makes the poem poetic.

Let's look at a few simple examples:

'Spotted Owl,' by Court Smith, The Eloquent Umbrella, 1990, p. 35.

I like this one because… well, there's no owl in the picture.

'Breezes,' by Court Smith, The Windless Orchard, 31, p. 12

This one is less my kind of poem but I think it's a better example because there's no one way to read the piece. It's as if the wind has blown the words about and, for an instant, they've gathered in this shape and this is a snapshot of that moment.

The concrete poetry movement started in Europe and Brazil in the 1950s and 1960s. In the mid-fifties, Eugene Gomringer in Switzerland and a group of poets working together in Brazil, defined concrete poetry as writing that "begins by being aware of graphic space as a structural agent", so that words or letters can be juxtaposed, not only in relation to each other but also to the page area as a whole. The Brazilians - Décio Pignatari, Augusto and Haroldo de Campos-defined "concrete" with an emphasis on the word as a unit in space.

In his essay, From Concrete to Visual Poetry, with a Glance into the Electronic Future, Klaus Peter Dencker makes this helpful comment:

No customary left-right reading will work, no usual sentences, no given sequencing, not even words that had once been complete-the reader must himself become productive, discover constellations, determine double meanings of words, develop his own history with the language material being offered.

What I have struggled to find is why exactly the term concrete poetry to describe what is the most abstract of literary forms.

In this example by the Scottish poet, Edwin Morgan, the shape of the poem effectively gets his point over, the consequence of time on our understanding of history. It's vaguely reminiscent of some ancient scrap of paper: think Dead Sea Scrolls and you'll see where my head is.

The Swiss poet and artist, Eugen Gomringer, who single-handedly founded the European branch of the concrete poetry movement, gives this rather striking example of how to interact with concrete poetry although I would suggest it could be applied to all poetry to be honest.

The constellation is the simplest possible kind of configuration in poetry which has for its basic unit the word; it encloses a group of words as if it were drawing stars together to form a cluster.

The constellation is an arrangement, and at the same time, a play-area of fixed dimensions.

The constellation is ordered by the poet. He determines the play-area, the field or force and suggests its possibilities. The reader, the new reader, grasps the idea of play, and joins in.

In the constellation something is brought into the world. It is a reality in itself and not a poem about something or other. The constellation is an invitation. – From Line to Constellation

Here's a nice index to concrete poems you can find online.

A very long and detailed essay Poetry: A World View by Mary Ellen Solt is also worth investigating.


The Internet has, of course, allowed this to move onto the next logical step, animated poetry. Three straightforward examples can be found in Born Magazine #1: 'Five Kinds of Weather Roll Across Texas', 'Among the Gospel Trees the Only Moving Thing' and 'What Afterlife'. Here's another of a poem by Octavio Paz, 'Certainty'.

The problem with all of these is that I found having the pace of the poem forced upon my a bit annoying. But perhaps I do read too quickly at times and need to be slowed down.

And then we move onto interactive poetry. Interactivity was a big thing a while ago. People got all excited about it about the same time as someone invented the term "virtual reality" and suggested it might be a bit better than real reality for some cockamamie reason.

Robert Kendall's 'Clues', is an interactive poem including pictures. I'm not sure I get it and I may not be doing it right but it's intriguing. It reminds me of those novels that never really caught on where the author gave you several options: if you want A. to happen turn to page x, if you want B. to happen turn to page y and if you want C. to happen just keep on reading. I liked the idea but it needed the Internet for all that to come together.

A slightly better example is 'Insomnia' by David Jewell where you do get to choose the direction the poem takes.

Jim Andrews' Nio is a more playful piece. In an interview he describes it:

The particular content in it now is a two part interactive audio piece for the Web that combines sound poetry, music, and visual poetry of my animations and vocals. I hope people see it suggests a new form of music. Though, since the audio and the visuals are pretty tightly conjoined, it might be described as a multimedia form rather than solely a musical form. The underlying program, which I wrote in Lingo, is a player, like the Real Player is a player, of synchronized, interactive layers and sequences of audio and animations for the Web. You interactively construct these layers and sequences of sound/animation. It synchronizes multiple layers of rhythmic sound and provides uninterrupted audio between sequenced sound files, and synchronizes the animations with the sound. - Turbulence

A "still" from 'Nio' by Jim Andrews

Here are three more conventionally animated examples of poems by Billy Collins:




There are a few sites that use animation not simply to compliment the poetry but to attract children. A number of examples can be found on the BBC site. Personally I'm not sure how much these would keep a child's attention. I suppose they might do for an hour or so. I'm a bit too far away from being around little kids to make a realistic assessment.

Another type of animated poem leans more towards concrete poetry. Here are a number of delightful little examples by the Argentinean poet Ana María Uribe, which she calls anipoems: Gym 1, Rebound 1, Spring, Winter and Ladder 3 and this is what she has to say about them:

In Anipoems, the main components are typography and motion, in that order. And once motion is added, rhythm becomes all important, since I work with repetition and short sequences of elements.

Typography and words - as in the old Typoems [her name for static poems] - are still the main elements, since the letters themselves are my source of inspiration. They project themselves into the world around me and they act upon it, and not, as much, the other way around, as one might be led to believe.

These were very early examples. She has since moved on and included sound:

These more recent works also begin to have a plot, however simple it may be. There is a timeline with a starting point, a climax and a denouement. 'A Busy Day' depicts one day in the life of Mr. @. In 'Discipline' the "h"'s (a letter which in Spanish is always mute) are tyrannized by a dictator. In 'Deseo - Desejo – Desire' - a trilingual "erotic" Anipoem - the letters "s" and "i" in "desire" join in a tango dance, forming the Spanish word "si" (=yes), in apparent acceptance. However, on a second reading, "si" in Spanish also means "if", so success should not be taken for granted after all.

In interview she expresses her opinion on e-poetry in general:

I translated the titles into English. On the other hand, language is no obstacle to understanding my web work because most of the poems are based on letters and not words. This is natural: any references you find there are universal. It is obvious that differences in appreciation stem from the various cultural backgrounds.

Nevertheless, I would not say this about all electronic poetry. Some e-poems are very universal. Anybody can understand [the Vietnamese writer] Duc Thuan's 'She' although it is based on an English word. Jim Andrews 'Seattle Drift' is visually so expressive that we sense its meaning even if we do not understand the text. We also have sound e-poems that do not require mastering any language. Most e-poetry, however, is language dependent.

Jim Andrews' 'Ound Poem' is quite lovely but I'm not sure I get it. Dan Waber's short collection Strings and Strings II are definitely worth checking out.

A "still" from 'Ound' by Jim Andrews

I'm actually not sure I get most visual poetry. A lot of them strike me as a puzzle to work out, visual metaphors, and when you've got them that's it.

Part three

p.s. if you can get Film 4 then do yourself a favour and set your recorder for Saturday 01:35 BST. The film is Quiet City. I mentioned it a few blogs ago. It is a beautiful film where nothing particularly happens but that isn't especially important.


Art Durkee said...

There's a difference between illustration and illumination.

Illustration merely shows a picture that is an image from the poem. It's an add-on. There's nothing bad about this, it's just that it doesn't add a lot to the poem itself, and other pictures can be substituted for it without any loss of mood or feeling.

Illumination by contrast adds layers of meaning and complexity to the text. The words and picture synergize into a greater whole, they complement each other, you can't really separate them again once you've seen them together. The picture becomes indelibly connected with the text, the same way a melody in a song setting of a poem becomes indelibly connected with the text. A greater unity is achieved.

Gene's photo for the Frost poem doesn't bother me because it's not a photo of literally the actual diverging roads Frost was writing about—after all, an image can be symbolic and iconic and archetypal the same way the poem can be. Exactly which road Frost had in his mind shouldn't matter because in one way the poem is about ALL diverging roads. In other words, the image in the poem isn't literal, so why should we get too literal about the illustration? The image in the poem operates symbolically, which is what poetry does: an "image" in poetry is not a literal picture, but can be an archetype and mutable in its details, while remaining universal in its meaning and engagement with readers. Gene's photo is iconic, and therefore adds layers to the poem, and doesn't detract from it in any way. And who knows but in Frost's mind which exact crossroads he was thinking of? Memory can go back and and forth in time, and realize that oh yeah, that other crossroad, in fact all the crossroads I've ever seen in my lifetime, add layers to this image.

I've actually seen several different photographs illustrating this same poem. Gene's isn't bad, but for me it's not as iconic or symbolic as some other photos I've seen. It's good, but for me it's an illustration rather than an illumination.

For myself, if I have a poem-image combination, the question of which comes first is interesting to those who like historical details but it doesn't matter to the finished piece. A finished artwork/piece isn't time-bound. Or if it is, it's an illustration, not a synergistic single entity. The truth is, and any artist knows this, sometimes the completing detail can come a long time after everything else is in place. I have found photos or artworks of mine that I made some time ago that now neatly fit in with the poem; and vice versa. Sometimes it's a matter of the artist circling back to a constellation of recurring subjects or themes in their work; coming at them more than once, from more than one direction; then at a later time putting them together, and they fall into place as though they had been meant to be together all along. In other pieces, the process was much simpler, and I had a poem I liked and went out and made a photo for it. Or I had a photo I really liked, and wrote a poem to it. The exact order in which the elements were made, and assembling, is actually not very interesting to me. The finished multi-layered piece is what matters to me.

jj said...

very interesting overview.
Give us more.

Anonymous said...

Not so much of a blog post as a journey of discovery!

Thank you.

Jim Murdoch said...

JJ, thanks for dropping by. There will be more on Monday. I'm sure after that that I'll return to some of the subjects I've covered in these overviews. The problem really is condensing everything into something not too long and there is simply so much information out there. All I can do is pick bits and pieces here and there and gradually build up a picture. It's interesting because all the time I'm learning, it's not as if I'm delving into this treasure trove of knowledge because I'm not. I have my areas of speciality but the rest is all new to me. As you said, Adrian, it's a "voyage of discovery".

Art, I see what you're saying about the difference between illustration and illumination up to a point but, to take your example of the song, both lyrics and melody can be separated from each other and a different words added to the melody and a new tune written to complement the words. Only our familiarity with an image, like the page showing Blake's 'The Tyger', would make us step back and go, "Eh?" If we rubbed out the poem, replaced another tiger poem and gave it to a bunch of school kinds I have my doubts that they'd say, "Er, wait a minute, Sir, are you 'aving a laugh? These two patently don't go together."

As for poor Gene and his photo, yes, of course the imagery in the poem needs no illustration. I'm just not sure that any image would be right now, even if we knew for a fact exactly what Frost had in mind – if indeed he had any specific image in mind, when he wrote it – because the poetic image is bigger than any visual one. I'm tempted to think, in fact, that adding artwork to an iconic poem like this might possibly even detract from the work. It would be like someone illustrating 'Mr. Bleaney' with a photograph of the titular characters. It's not necessary. I have no image of the man in my head, nor of the landlady nor the poem's narrator – I don't need them. I could tolerate a photo of the kind of bedsit if compelled to but the work has existed in the abstract for so long in my head I can't imagine any room being quite right.

As for your last paragraph, having never attempted to combine poetry and art in any order I can't comment. I've tried out other forms of expression but decided early on that words were all I needed. I never say never. If I had then I'd never have written anything bar poetry and that would've been a shame. So maybe one day I will see something that needs something else to compliment it. And, if I do, you'll be the first to know assuming this blog hasn't died a death by then.

Dave King said...

This is mammoth post, Jim, which I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed reading. There are so many themes that could be picked up and run with, but I think I will keep it to pure enjoyment at this stage - exept perhaps to obcerve that I always examine the pictures in a waiting room. Always, it's part of my religion.

Jim Murdoch said...

Thanks for that, Dave, I've been working on it, on and off, for a few weeks. I tend to do that quite a bit, have several on the go at a time and do a bit every now and then as the mood takes me. And there's a very good chance that I'll return to some of these themes later on.

Really this was an overview. Most of the topics here are ones I've not taken any great interest in in the past. Now I have I'm keen to explore my feeling a bit more. I don't get a lot of this poetry. And I don't like not getting things especially when I can see some people who are very passionate about what they do. I'd like to understand that passion and the need to express themselves in the way they choose. I don't ever expect to get an answer as to why Picasso was an artist and Mozart and composer but I do appreciate how frustrating words can be and can see why people might want to stretch them or graft things (i.e. art) onto them to expand their possibilities. Maybe I need to experiment just for the fun of it. The trouble is I'm not really sure where to start. I'm not even sure my mind thinks that way.

Alex Moore said...

I ran across your blog & enjoyed the journey through it. Because of time constraints, I sampled a bit here and there, scanned for words that popped, and delved deeper when an image beckoned. Thank you for the experience.

Jim Murdoch said...

Well, Alex, always nice to see a new name. And have a look at my archive too. This blog has been on the go for a year now and there's a wealth of stuff to delve into if you've a mind.

Anonymous said...

Hey Jim, this is a little to out of my field to comment on meaningfully ('never stopped ye before, ye bugger!) but I greatly enjoyed reading it.

Plus, I got 'Quiet City' on tape thanks to you. 'Looking forward to that.

Dave King said...

Thanks Jim,
I know what you mean by not liking it when you don't get something but see other people getting passionate about it. I quite often do a post on something of that nature, but seem to end up being controversial and not getting very much further. You seem to have avoided that pitfall - if pitfall it is. A remakably good post! Hope it helped you as much as it did me.

Jim Murdoch said...

It's out of your field, Ken? Join the club. I've basically just done my research, tidied it all up and thrown it to the wolves. When I have the time I do want to return to some of these issues but, for now, it's just something to get people thinking.

Glad you taped Quiet City. I've just watched it again and started to pick up on a lot of the subtlety there is to the piece. It really is a lovely film. And I'm particularly impressed with the lead actress. I hope she goes places. I checked IMDB but she's not done much else but I will go back and check from time to time.

And, Dave, I know what you mean about a post becoming controversial and I do try and steer away from that but I do like to make people think. I think there are so many writers out there – myself included – who find their niche and get comfortable with it and that is just not the way to go. If there is a single question I would have the writers who read my posts to ask is: Why? Why did I do that? Sometimes the answer will be because it felt right but I'm more interested in why something felt right. Writing is causational: there is a cause (or an amalgam of causes) and a subsequent effect or effects. What goes on in between?

Dominic makes reference to an essay by Robert Bly which I found fascinating because Bly breaks down the process into "chambers" which I liked very much; I even suggested a couple of extra "chambers". It's worth checking out.

Art Durkee said...

Well, some of us have exploratory natures, or spirits, rather than stay-at-home natures. Fortunately the poetic tent is big enough for all of us, and all of this. Of course, some poets are more closed-minded than others, and the attacks on "experimentation" from the neo-conservative wing are endless. (And often enough, vice versa.)

The success of the individual piece is what matters to me. The ideology surrounding it doesn't matter very much, if the piece itself is uninteresting. A lot of avant-grade poetic experiments are often not very good art; a lot of political poetry is not very good art; a lot of the poetry that is pushed forward these days as being cutting-edge is not very good art. That in itself is not the problem. The problem is that when ideology drives practice, there is a problem.

For example, some of the poem-painting interface-breaking pieces under discussion here are One Trick Ponies: once you figure them out, who cares? I feel the same way about puzzle-box or decoder-ring poems: once you've figured out the gimmick, is there any pleasure in re-reading the poem again later? For example, the test of great mystery writing, such as Raymond Chandler's, is that you don't care that you already know whodunit, you read the stories again because they're such great writing, such a pleasure to read and re-read. A lot of gimmick-art doesn't hold up in this way, including a lot of experimental and avant-garde art. But the mistake a lot of critics make is assuming that the problem is with the ideology of the avant-garde, rather than the execution of the art itself. For example, I appreciate the ideas behind a lot of avant-garde poetry like Language Poetry; I know the theory from years of reading in the avant-garde, especially in experimental music, and the techniques and procedures are familiar to me; but the execution of the ideas in the art itself, in Language Poetry, often sucks. All too often, the poetry itself doesn't live up to its own ideas and theories.

So, the proof is in the final artwork, not in the idea behind it.

Now, I think a lot of the pieces you're talking about here DO work. I just want to be clear that for every great piece of ekphrastic poetry there are several that are too literal and/or not very good.

The issue of the comfort zone is also a good thing to discuss. Lots of haiku I write are not so great. But I rarely revise a haiku; usually I just make a new attempt on the same topic or image. Lots of artists do this. There is a point at which an artist starts repeating himself, though: and a comfort zone turns into a rut. One thing you can say about a lot of the art and poetry you're discussing here, on the edges of each other, on the edge of multimedia, is that it's not stuck in a rut.

I don't think I can agree that writing is causal (causational). Sometimes it just happens. Art just happens. It comes when it comes, and my job is just to be ready for that moment. Last night I wrote two poems, after a long dry spell. Basically I was just writing a casual little haiku, and the poem indicated it wanted to be more than that. It fell into that new form I invited about a year ago, and I posted it on my blog.

Having studied a fair bit of theoretical physics, and theology, the whole concept of cause-and-effect has been seriously called into question. For one thing, effects can precede causes in some theoretical models. Mind you, most of the time this is irrelevant, because people go about their lives as normal. But I don't anything for granted. Why did that woman pick up that particular bunch of grapes in the produce aisle?

Jim Murdoch said...

You're quite right, Art, at the end of the day every work of art stands alone. And some get left with very little for the reader to work with, the one-trick ponies as you call them. Any ideology goes out of the window. And this is what I mean when I talk about a poet having half the poem still in his head. All poems make sense to their writers because they have the missing bits, the bits that never quite made it into the poem, still in their head. That's why I suspect that a lot of visual poetry is not a clever as their writers think it is.

On causality, I think we could get caught up with semantics here if we're not careful. I've applied physics to poetry myself but it's just a metaphor to make a point. Poetry is not physics but it's a very poetic way to try and explain the poetic process. I liked Bly's approach but I think filters would be a better metaphor and there can be a delayed effect because the filters get clogged. It's no different to memories, one day out of the blue you'll remember something, say, walking into a classroom when you were eight, and you wonder what the hell happened to dislodge that particular memory. Who knows.

Art Durkee said...

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I think it's really really necessary for artists to get out of their comfort zones, their ruts, and their usual practices, and shake themselves up a bit.

That's why a lot of multi-disciplinary artwork interests me, because it's clear the artist is not sticking to the tried and true.

That's also why I applaud your own explorations in this series. As you said, it's new territory to you. Would that more writers were willing to explore in this way. Kudos.

Faith Lasts said...

Nice blog. Keep on writing . some valuable stuff you got there :)

Jim Murdoch said...

Thanks for the kind words Bhawana. You'll be pleased to note that Part three is now up and ready.

Conda Douglas said...

Lots of good stuff in this post and the one before it, Jim.

Reminded me of a library book I adored, back in the day when out-of-print books were hard to come by. It was a collection of art-inspired poetry and poems inspired by art. For example, there was a portrait of Robert Graves with his poem, "My Name and I."

Alas, over the decades, the title of that book has vanished from my mind, or retreated to a cranny not to be accessed consciously.

Anybody know?

Jim Murdoch said...

Wrong continent I'm afraid, Conda. I couldn't tell you how old I was before I first heard of Robert Graves, probably about twenty, about the same time I discovered that American's actually wrote poetry too.

Anonymous said...

Why are missles photoshopped onto the hay wagon?

Jim Murdoch said...

skydiveklz1, very well observed. Can't imagine how I missed it in the first place unless someone has fiddled with the thing since.

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