Thursday, September 27, 2012

2D3D Poetry Show Featuring Lady Di, Amelia, Nefertiti Photo Poem Montages

Photographer Robyn Beattie and I are very proud to announce that three of our photo poem montages were chosen to be featured as part of a 2D3D visual poetry show hosted next month by the LH Horton Jr. Gallery at San Joaquin Delta College (Center for the Arts, curator Chandra Cerrito). Authors included as point of departure for the artwork range from Ovid, Rilke, Dickens, Coleridge and Tolkien to more contemporary authors such as Neruda, Ashbery and Alexandra Teague.

Robyn and I will be driving to Stockton for the opening reception on October 4th, from 5-7. We are thrilled to have this chance to share our work with a larger audience and excited to meet the rest of the exhibiting artists.

 In lieu of the haul to Stockton, the entire show can be viewed via the website.

Our montages chosen for the show: “She Dressed in a Hurry, for Lady Di,” “Amelia,” and our most recently finished montage (just last month), “Nefertiti Among Us.” “Lady Di” and “Nefertiti Among Us” feature my father on piano performing the work of Scriabin and Bartok while “Amelia” features the voice of Lori O’Hara and an original guitar score written and performed by Michael Greenberg.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, while I’ve been somewhat (joyfully) confined to the domestic monastery, Robyn’s burgeoning life as an artist and photographer means we have beautiful crossover and opportunity to include works by other artists as she ventures out into the world with her immaculate eye and records a trail of where she’s been for us to harvest.

Featured within the photo poem montage “Nefertiti Among Us” we have an amazing mummy mask by E. McK. Filmer, dolls by Margaret Keelan, and a detail from Michael Cookinham’s painting, “Mummy Dreams.” “Amelia” contains artwork by Loreen Barry (a frail butterfly and markings we borrowed to imply hieroglyphics) as well as the bronze airplane sculpture and shadow of the same by Monty Monty.

Robyn and I are mid-process creating new montages for a series of poems based on the imagined life of Guinevere as well as a montage to accompany a poem based on the Italian fairytale, The Three Oranges. I hope you’ll stop by the gallery site, either in person or via virtual tour, to celebrate with us and check out the range of artistic response to poetry.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Honoring Malinda Markham

“Markham’s is a poetry of scrims and scarves, of meaning held just out of reach—not to frustrate, but to build a sense of wonder with layers of feeling and image without concretizing either, which would diffuse their magic.” –Mari L’Esperance, Connotation Press, Review of Malinda Markham’s Having Cut the Sparrow’s Heart

In response to loss of all kinds, we often turn to poetry for solace.

And when poets lose other poets, we turn to the words of the particular poet we lost. So I will start this post with a link to former poet and translator Malinda Markham’s poem: Just Past this Road Lives a Figure Imprisoned in a Tower (Verse Daily, 2010).

 Several lines in the closing stanzas of this poem read:

How many times

People set out to reach you.

Facing the day, the myriad steps and missteps of a poet’s life, I am reminded by this loss to persevere towards connection in all my relations, making contact, sustaining contact and connection. As a poet, I do not necessarily view death as a barrier to communication, listening, and connection, poetry itself--like night time dreams and astral travel—a bridge to the other side if you believe in such comfort. I do.

Yet tangibly, in the frame of disparate bodies day by day, I share the grief of your particular loss, Mindy, (with utmost condolences to your family) along with those of us who spent our MFA years with you in the heartland. Blessings. My prayer is that you rest sweetly in peace knowing you have left a trail of beautiful poems behind you.

Further reading:

Here is a lovely review of Markham’s second book, Having Cut the Sparrow’s Heart by Mari L’Esperance, Connotation Press, Sept 2012.

And here is the announcement posted last week at the blog Freedom in Harmony, complete with review quotes and Amazon links to Markham’s first book, Ninety-Five Nights of Listening (winner of the Bakeless Prize, Mariner/Houghton Mifflin, 2002) and her second book, Having Cut the Sparrow’s Heart (New Issues, 2010).

March 2015 addition: Malinda Markham: Felt Intelligence, Compassionate Interiority, also by Mari L’Esperance