Thursday, 5 December 2013

Gallery Readings for December 7th 2013

Times:  12.30 - 1.30  and   2.30 - 3.30 p.m.

Poet                       Poem                                Object                                            Gallery


Diana Moore    Flamingo Calypso           Flamingo painting                    Jameel Centre

Dr Jennifer McGowan   Cyrano de Bergerac as a Cardinal in Old Age  after bust by Pierre LeGros

                                                                                                                                                       Baroque gallery

Peter Mallin    Convent Thoughts, Charles Allston Collins          Gallery 67


Nick Owen    Flesh and Bones, the spirit of an age      all works   Moore Bacon Exhibition


Paul Surman     GLITCH                      After Francis Bacon                   Moore Bacon exhibition


Poem on Francis Bacon




Putrefying flesh; the spirit of an age


and the life of Bacon’s Man
Poor, mean, ugly, British and short
With a nod to Hobbes’ Leviathan

My work is not violent
Reality does that so much better

Fifty years ago
Bacon was elevated to the status of a God
while showing us everything most vile
about sex between man and man
“You are born, you fuck, you die.”
It made me mad, it made me want to cry.

Fifty years from now
I want to see these pictures
on the walls of Auschwitz
a lasting, memorable tribute
to man’s inhumanity
to man  

his flesh so pink
not cooked
just melting
in the pan.

The subject is subjected
pinned
he squirms, twists, turns
to not be seen
obscene.

He took the perfect order
beauty in the images he found
and “messed” with them
distorted them
disturbed them
till the goodness
oozed
like blood and puss
upon the ground.

His crucifixions
are self portraits
they stare back at us
not in transcendence
but to condemn

the ones who dare to gaze upon
man’s violence
perpetrated
on his fellow man.

We are voyeurs, not viewers
holding on to what would not be held
within our looking, in our gaze

his victims desire escape
they try to vanish
seeking to be lost in a haze.

He gives us antidote to beauty
a kind of porn that is not porn
for everything that could be beautiful
is smudged or torn.

He tells us we are born
just to fuck
and die
yet this is what our galleries
and muse-eums
are keen to buy

I wonder, why?


©Nick Owen                                             December 2013

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Vanity confronting truth



So, 
this is truth, who has arrested me,
just when I was  trying to escape?

She holds me fast
and forces me to think.
The hairs start rising on my nape.

The artist is a master of 3 D.
I’m gripped
by the illusion;
she reaches out to me.

If truth is beauty,
beauty truth,
what hope remains for those of us
who have let go their youth.

The artist leaves behind no name
and yet his work survives by standing here.
Perhaps she paints herself,
and thus lives on for ever more;
or maybe he, in jest,
immortalised his whore.

My vanity requires that I dwell here.
Let me be famous, not an empty skull;
admired by my friends
and everyone who feels my pull.

I see your face.
It shines astonishingly bright.
I see your face is shining
Even in the confines of my dreams at night.

Is this a Goddess that I see before me,
fingering the frame above my head.
Wait.
I do not see myself.
The mirror just reflects the skull instead.

There’s only darkness where there should be light.
The deepest darkness sits
where I  should find the very brightest light.
That can’t be right.

I’m so afraid that truth
will find me light weight on her scales,
I have reflected me within the picture frame.
I truly think that this might work,

if my poor poem fails.

Copyright      nick owen

Sunday, 22 September 2013

The Kore Ignores the Deeds of Artemis

I'm supposed to stand impassive
while the arch-eyed Artemis wades
in with shins thick as cedars, stops
the gobs of her horn-eared dogs
with giants' heads. I have averted
my gaze for centuries, as stone sweat
drips from big-men's armipts when
the canines sink into their brains,
and as if by reflex, their index
fingers gouge out eyes. My mouth
is stretched into the most artificial
grin I can muster, my hair done
in braids, my nipples perpetually
raised beneath the muslin-alabaster -
and my arm, knocked off long ago
by some clumsy jobsworth, still
proffers an invisible hare. I do it
by staring without pupils, so I
cannot see the moon. Last night,
I dared to look - and as the giants die,
a bead of blood runs down my inner thigh.
Poem by Giles Watson, 2013. Inspired by a fortuitous juxtaposition in the Cast Gallery at the Ashmolean Museum: a group of Korai (women depicted in the height of late-archaic fashion, with brightly-painted clothes, holding out offerings of small animals) from the Athenian Acropolis, stand opposite an extraordinarily visceral cast from the Great Altar at Pergamon, depicting the battle between the Giants and the Gods.

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Poem by Peter Malin for 5th October




Object     Ennui, painting by Walter Sickert (1917-18)


Gallery 63      Sickert and his Contemporaries

Poem

All Over

The scene’s mundane, banal; love’s at an end
In this drab room
Whose sickly décor wears the ochre hues
Of autumn’s fading.
Here we view this man, this woman,
Studiously absent from each other’s gaze,
Reiterating their thoughts’ tormented libretti
As the room plays and replays
Its sullen symphony of brown.


SHE: We thought love star-begotten, angel-blest,
Needless of nurture: lovers’ grained-in fault;
And so we squandered starlight unconfessed,
Smudged its bright promise to this yellowed vault
Where, joined but separate in the artist’s eye,
We thank our stars there’s nothing left alive to die.

HE:   My gaze aspires to space’s lightless vault,
Aches for the joy of universal dark,
Thinks to oblivion all that was my fault
In snuffing, quenching, love’s defenceless spark.
The artist’s palette paints our lives to brown,
But cannot limn the void where, lost and deep, we drown.

New poem by Paul Surman for gallery reading on 5 October.

STILL LIFES

A red drift veined in the marble table top,
the plump lustre of those grapes.
Studied inflorescence in a vase,
that knife not carelessly laid down.

The spiralled curl of half-peeled fruit
placed purposely to test the painter's art,
the drop of water that bulges inside
its surface tension. They are not the story.

After obsessive precision, long hours
of patient lingering over details,
they are merely a collection of surfaces,
shine and sheen, transparency and glint.

But painted objects lend weight to the mind

as if they or thought could be grasped

Painting by Claire Peeters 

Room 48

Friday, 2 August 2013

Poetry confronting art; update

Just a couple of places left on the summer school at the Ashmolean exploring ekphrastic poetry.

We will be seeking assistance from forces in the unconscious to find a piece of art which moves us and create a poem that does it justice.

The schedule will be flexible, but goes approximately like this.

Day 1  7th August

10.30 welcome with tea/coffee.

10.40 Introducing ourselves

10.50  Presentation: Poetry at the Museum

11.10 Psychological Induction for exploring the museum with a poet's inner eye.

11.30 Finding your art work. Visiting the museum galleries.

12.30  Reconvene  in the lecture theatre. Discussion of the story so far.

12.45 - 1.30 Lunch break; tea and coffee available at 1.30.

1.30 - 3.15 Putting your ideas on paper. Form and content. Shaping words into poetry

3.15 - 3.30 Archetype and image. The core experience of poem and art.
            
 
Day 2.   8th August

10.30 Dream and daydream - sharing creative processes. Tea/coffee

10.40 Using a camera or visual ideas to enhance writing. Poem-picture making. Ekphrastic poetry.

11.00 Revisiting the art in the museum. 

11.30 Your poem takes shape. Individual coaching.

12.45 - 1.30 lunch Tea/coffee on return

1.30 - 3.10 Writing with support.

3.10 - 3.30  Sharing work, feedback and goodbyes.

Friday, 19 July 2013

A few places still available on the summer school

http://www.oxforduniversitystores.co.uk/browse/extra_info.asp?compid=1&modid=1&deptid=123&catid=938&prodvarid=567

There are just a few places left on the course, poetry confronting art, 7/8 August 2013 at The Ashmolean. There is just time left to apply for a bursary of the full cost of the course if you have signed up. Send an ekphrastic poem about an object in the Ashmolean to me at the e-mail address of this weblog, once you have enrolled. The best poem wins. I am very much looking forward to helping people find inspiration for creative poetry writing. Do remember to bring a camera or smartphone with you to the course if you have one. Don't worry if not, the museum can lend you one. cameras are not essential, but your images can help you develop your work.

Poetry confronting art; a summer school at The Ashmolean Museum 7/8 August

http://www.oxforduniversitystores.co.uk/browse/extra_info.asp?compid=1&modid=1&deptid=123&catid=938&prodvarid=567

Please contact Nick Owen directly on 07962532478 to learn more about this course.

Thursday, 18 July 2013

Diana Moore: Pan and his Pipes

http://www.ashmoleanprints.com/image/383266/italian-padua-inkstand-pan-listening-to-echo


Name of poet:                DIANA MOORE                           date sent in:  3rd June 2013



Title of poem:   PAN AND HIS PIPES


Name of object in the museum:   PAN LISTENING TO ECHO


Number and name of Gallery in the museum:   WESTERN ART, GALLERY 43






Pan and his pipes.  Pan and his pipes . Pipes, pipes, pipes.
Pan and his pipes.  Pan and his pipes.  Pipes, pipes, pipes.
He’s stopped and he’s stopped in his tracks.  Tracks.
What is it in the air that he lacks?   Lacks, lacks.

I have waited in the meadow with the flowers.  Hours
Sweet are the daisy and cowslip.  Slip
Here in the meadow, alone by and by
I sigh.  Sigh.

Where are you Echo my love?   I Love.
You are my only love. Am I your only one?  Only one.
Here am I for you always, to no other will I go.  Go.
Is that you singing in the leaves, don’t leave me.  Leave me.
Alone, I don’t want to be alone.  Alone.

What say you plants…?
Come Crested dogs-tail.  I ail.
Do you feel low, as I do, Musk mallow?
Are you ill for love, Tormentil?

Here among the Meadow Brome.  I roam
I roam and seek your presence.  Essence.
I have waited in the meadowsweet meadow.  Oh!
Echo, come take my hand.  And
I will wait for you here in the meadow. Oh! Woe!

©Diana Moore

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Diana writes and performs for both children and adults.  Her poetry workshops are fun and interactive.  For further information, or to book an event, please contact Diana via her website or on mobile:  07789 302995.  www.diana-moore.com

Information sourced from the Ashmolean research team.
Pan Listening to Echo
Attributed to DESIDERIO DA FIRENZE
(active Veneto 1532 – 45)
Padua or Venice, 1520 - 30

Long regarded as one of the most poetic small bronzes of the Italian Renaissance, the so-called Pan listening to Echo was the first bronze that Fortnum ever acquired. 

The classical god of the woods and fields is here shown in near-human form, with only his small horns, sharp pointed ears and tuft of tail betraying his true nature.   More commonly depicted in art as a satyr-like figure driven by his animal instincts, Pan is depicted in quite a different light in the story of his vain love for the nymph Echo, which appears in Greek pastoral poetry.  Around the beginning of the sixteenth century, the story enjoyed renewed popularity because of the enormous success of the poem Pan and Echo by the great poet Poliziano, first published in 1494.  These haunting verses, in which the echo responds to the lover’s lament, are a perfect gloss on the bronze and may well have directly inspired it.


Che fai tu Echo mentre chio ti chiamo? Amo.
Ami tu duo/ o pur un solo? un solo.
E io te sol e non altri amo: altri amo
Dunque non ami tu un solo? Un solo
Questo è un dirmi inon tamo: inon tamo
Quel che tu ami: amil tu solo? Solo
Chi tha levato dal mio Amore? Amore
Chef a quello achi porti Amore? Ah more.


Note:  The above is an extract from a longer (two-page) article.

Inspiration for the piece ~ a note from Diana Moore

I was taken with gentleness of Pan in this bronze, as well as the title Pan Listening to Echo.  I was curious as to why he is depicted in this almost human form (he has toes, while the satyr-like Pan god has cloven hooves).  I like the detail and quality (you need to see his back for the muscle detail).  I could see scope to write a musical piece, however, for this occasion, I have experimented with an echo poem.  I met with a native Italian to get a translation of the old poem (above) and this gave me a starting point for my own work.

Greek Mythology
There are a number of stories of Echo in Greek mythology.  Firstly, Echo had her power of speech taken away by Zeus’s wife, Hera  (see the tale of Echo and Hera);  secondly,  Echo fell in love with Narcissus, but Narcissus was only in love with himself.  Thirdly, Pan fell in love with Echo but Echo did not love him back and that is the angle I have chosen to write about, Pan’s vain love for Echo.

There is a more harrowing tale of Pan and Echo in which she is torn to shreds for rejecting Pan, and there is yet another story that suggests Pan and Echo were married and had two children…!

Saturday, 15 June 2013

THE LAST NIGHT, A NIGHTINGALE by Vahni Capildeo

You begin with a design:
the artist’s strokes
a kind of preening that elicits
frictive glosses from your close-up wings.
Whoever drew you also caged you,
this freehand desert-colour time-box
partly pinkish, like your eggshells.
Through a set of lilac lines,
and dawn, and dusk,
you look sideways.
Sweet, invasive and entirely silenced thing,
I’ve company to place beside you –
not yet.
Passerine bird,
in your passage from Persian to English
you’re no longer a nightingale, though you’ll warble
and curl your toes.
While you perch,
I’m minded to bring you a tree and a night
and a song to be yours: the memorable one
flung out by your namesake from a moonstruck twig
that time our deaths were forecast on the news
so we went for a walk, and rested in you

our everything lyrical forever.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Emperor by Nick Owen (second draft)

Just a sketch
Guidelines for street art
A welcome for the Spanish Governor

And the most compelling object in this old museum

These are the lines of battle                                 
Lines of sorrow
And defeat

No face has endured more

His eyes
Look back into his soul
Look outward in fear

His will to power holds him hanging by a thread

His lips
Set firm
Are yet resigned to what must come

The crown sits awkwardly
Tipping backward from his forehead
Ready to fall

He knows nothing of surrender to the Self

He holds high his sceptre
An almost empty threat
A sword without an edge

He will never know the peace of letting go

His body bent
Right foot inching forward
His head torn sideways

Death distracts him from left field
Armour and authority
Hold no sway with this assailant

The orb, the world
Held in his hand
Is eaten by shadows

His liver is all shadow
This wounded King knows
Nothing of the grail

His inner world
His outer world
A wasteland

Only fear
And an ego of steel
A habit of rulership

Fight off the darkness

He needs to feed on the world he mastered
Draw its mother milk to his embrace
No sustenance comes

Soon he will be food for worms

Despite his conquests in this world and time
He must return again to dust and slime

For in this portrait we can clearly see
He found no moment in eternity.


©Nick Owen 2013

Updated Readings for June gallery Readings

Gallery readings for June 15th
12.30-13.45      14.30-15.45

Poet                  Name of poem              Object                         Gallery

Gabby Tyrell            Netsuke (Manju)                    Netsuke                                      ?

Nick Owen                Emperor                          Emperor (Rubens  sketch)         Dutch gallery

Jennifer A McGowan    Morning at the Maru-Aten Temple  pavement painting          Egyptian Gallery

Andrew Smardon       Aestel                             the Alfred Jewell            Room 41 England 400 - 1600


Giles Watson            Morrigan         Bronze Raven's Head- Shaped Spout,                                                                                
                                                                                  First Century B.C. Hod Hill, Dorset.  Gallery 17                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                        (European Prehistory)

Olivia Byard       In true Colours.    The forest fire by Piero di Cosimo     Renaissance gallery.


Diana Moore    PAN AND HIS PIPES          PAN LISTENING TO ECHO                        WESTERN ART, GALLERY 43

Vahni Capildeo      The Last Night, A Nightingale    Red-vented Bulbul.     Gallery 33, Mughal India.


Paulette Mae       no title yet               The Cast Gallery... the casts in general  around the 'Old Fisherman'.


In True Colours (‘The Forest Fire’ by Piero di Cosimo) by Olivia Byard

I have always known such creatures
prowled in the forest; felt their flint eyes
watching; sensed them stir behind
thick boughs. Now here is proof.

Spilled out by fire into the fading day
they scatter in search of other lairs.
The cannier, with human face, look
almost shamed to be exposed like this;

yet lions and lumbering bears
race out unthinking beside a bellowing
domestic cow. In such a scurry
nightmares dissipate

to their fragmented parts. Yet
when, the fire tamed, plants begin
to reclaim those scorched-out tracks,
these creatures sneak back in,

conceal themselves in undergrowth
nest among burgeoning branches,
and wait, with silent intent,
for the dark dreams to quicken.


Olivia Byard

Published by The Flambard press

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Poems on aspects the Morrigan (Pagan Triple Goddess) by Dr Giles Watson

Gallery 17 (European Prehistory)
Cabinet: Resisting Rome
Item 5: Bronze Raven's Head- Shaped Spout, First Century B.C. Hod Hill, Dorset.

Morrigan

There's a way of ripping Roman flesh
that only ravens can do.  You take
a whole field-full, slaughtered
as a legion, and begin to fillet
the flesh, tweezering it between
blackened bills.  You gobble down
the cosmopolitan influence, disdaining
to choke on the fishbone-snags of
politics.  Politics isn't worth
a raven's feather out here, where
whole carcasses can be flensed
by wind alone.  Brawn goes down

the craw so easily, greased by the
subcutaneous lard of civilized men.

Poem by Giles Watson, 2013.  Inspired by a bronze raven's head spout from Hod Hill, Dorset, c. 100 B.C., created by the culture which resisted Roman occupation, and now on display in the Ashmolean Museum. The Morrigan is a ferocious Irish pre-Christian war-goddess whose sovereignty is attested in mediaeval manuscripts, but who was clearly sovereign to the Celts in the Roman era and earlier.

Nemain

If you saw me in my frenzy, my black hair
streaming behind me like a flock of rooks,
you would ram your own spear through your
entrails, rather than face me.  I can turn
friends fierce against each other: the merest
misunderstanding will set them filleting
and garotting, until the whole field
is a harvest of the twitching dead, furrows
channelling a full-on irrigation of steaming
blood.  The soil is fruitful these days:
there has been such a ploughing-in of men,
and crops grow out of livers and of brains.

One man to rot, one man to grow, one
for the mouse, and the rest - for the crow.

Poem by Giles Watson, 2013.  Nemain, an aspect of the Morrigan, is a fairy spirit who appears in times of war, bringing frenzy and havoc on the combatants.  She is capable of setting friendly armies against each other, and it is said that she can kill a hundred men with one battle cry.  The last two lines are derived from an old proverb about sowing grain.

Macha

I've got a steady grip on the bole of the beech tree:
you've not seen woman's muscles until you've seen mine.
One shake, and the mast starts falling, a bountiful crop
of men's heads.  Don't cross me at a red moon: my face
will sprout black feathers, my eyes harden into ebony
beads, and out of my arms the quills will thrust,
ready to batter whole armies into submission.  You can't
buy time from Macha: it has croaked out. Be afraid.

There is a groaning in the roots: whole generations
of luckless infantry, waiting to troop, by xylem
and phloem, up the trunk towards fruition, sucked
towards the branches, coalescing into kernels, turning
nut-hard, ready for cracking.  There's a squall
of raven calls above the husks and splintered skulls.

Poem by Giles Watson, 2013.  Macha is usually regarded as an aspect of the triple-goddess known as the Morrigan, an instigator of battle who often appeared in the form of a raven.  In her incarnation as the daughter of Ernmas, the Yellow Book of Lecan claims, she shakes out "the mast of Macha": a euphemism for the heads of slaugtered soldiers.  Beech mast would normally be shaken out by swineherds, because it provided valuable sustenance for pigs in autumn and winter.  Rarely, it might be argued, has Macha been worshipped more faithfully than by our modern politicians - even though they do so unconsciously.

The Garden of the Badb

Men's eyes hang on stalks of stubble,
swinging from their optic nerves,
pendulous as foxgloves.  There are
blood spots and other interpunctions
bold as orchids.  Heads, cleaved in
by horses' hooves, mould outwards
like mushrooms.  You can pick out
the rare flowers of ring-fingers
severed by swords, and spattered
gall-bladders like bitter herbs.

Men do these things spontaneously:
sow them once, and they excel
at self-seeding.  I can croak, preen,
swoop heedless through my blooming

garden.

Poem by Giles Watson, 2013.  The Badb, an aspect of the Morrigan, takes the form of a hooded crow.  She often plays a banshee-like role, calling to foretell important deaths, and she relishes warfare.  The battlefield is known as "the garden of the Badb".

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

I’VE GOT THE SILVER-FINNED BLUES by DIANA MOORE


PART ONE  ~  Bicci di Lorenzo ~ St Nicholas of Bari Banishing a Storm
~  Early Italian Art Gallery 42

St Nicholas of Bari banishing the Storm

I’ve got the silver- finned blues
I’ve been painted by a muse
They’ve labelled me as pagan
I might as well be Satan
For every time I sing sublimely
I get accused

Of stirring up a storm
When all I want to do is warn

*****
When I see waves a-lashing
Masts come down a-crashing

I could make a sailor cosy
Take him to my shell abode-y
Down, deep under the sea
But how can I lose
My silver-finned blues..?

******

Here comes Father Nicholas
Saviour of the day
He is kind and generous
He wants me out the way…?

If… I offer him oysters
In the cloisters
Sing to the wind
After we’ve... ‘sinned’

Pray for his soul

St Nick, St Nick, St Nicholas, St Nicholas
Grant this fish
This human fish
A wish
Splish! Splish!

For, how am I to form a bond..?
One sprinkle from your starry wand….

What! No?
He says go!


Well that’s not very generous
St Nicholas
(Huh!)

Help me!

I am gone
I must swim on… on… on….

And I feel

Bicci di Lorenzo
We are no longer friends so
I think I’ll find a different ship
I’m on my way, I’ve had a tip

I must say ‘bye-bye’
No tear in my eye

But that’s why
I’ve got the silver-flnned blues



I’VE GOT THE SILVER-FINNED BLUES  ~  PART TWO
Parcel -Gilt Silver Ship  ~  Michael Wellby Collection (Item 14)

Here I am with Wellby
Do you think he’ll want to sell me?
Are you hiring
A siren?
Maybe

I won’t let slip
I’ll hide on the side of the ship

Cruise along a table in an elegant castle
In my silver, salver of a silver-gilt parcel
And stopping close to the cream
A prince, I beam
His eyes, they gleam


©Diana Moore




Poetry and pictures at the museum ~  notes from Diana Moore

Diana says:  I love this painting, the magical quality; the dark and the light; the Saint arriving in a blaze of stars to save the mariners;  the mermaid craning her neck upwards and swimming  out of the picture… I decided to write about it from the mermaid’s point of view as she is almost incidental in the painting… (some people don’t notice she is there) and to experiment .. give her a voice… and I found my poem turning into a lyric (in line with the fictional singing mermaids) which, I feel, suited the take I had of a ‘misunderstood mermaid’.  My second performance worked well with the introductory lines sung in blues style – and the farewell to Bicci in tango style...  A large swell of people gathered in the gallery and I really appreciated the applause…!


I also appreciated the help I received from the Ashmolean research team:

Dr Catherine Wheeler, Senior Assistant Keeper, Department of Western Art
  for answering my questions on the Bicci di Lorenzo painting, and
Professor Timothy Wilson for his help with the parcel-gilt silver ship in the Michael Wellby collection.

For information:

The Bicci di Lorenzo painting: St Nicholas of Bari Banishing a Storm was object of the month back in 2001.  Here is a link to the painting with further information


And a note I received from Professor Timothy Wilson

 The silver-gilt ship is a late example of a type of object that was much loved on Medieval tables as a centrepiece and conversation piece, known as a nef. Some larger examples (there is one in the British Museum) have guns that fire and clockwork parts.

This one is only the most token representation of a sea-going sailing ship, but of course European sailing ships were increasingly dominating the world’s sea routes at the time the nef was made.

The charming sea-equines embossed and chased on the sides are a sort of sea-creature associated with Neptune and other sea deities of the ancient world; they ultimately derive from classical sculpture but were much taken up by Renaissance artists in many media. It is of course here conceived as in the water round the ship rather than as part of the ship itself.

The inventorying of the Wellby collection is at an early stage and I fear that is all the information, beyond what is on the label, I can give you.

Best wishes
Professor Timothy Wilson
Barrie and Deedee Wigmore Keeper of Western Art


Monday, 27 May 2013

Netsuke by Gabby Tyrell

Netsuke (Manju) taken from image Tales in the Round on museum website

Poem 1
Sweetcake
Carved by father’s hands over time
The man who dressed in a hurry - late for his meeting ran
through the village.

Hair slapdash with no care
Robes like open sails
Swirled around Sweetcake
destination unsure.

A smile crept across father’s face
With tools called Sou Sou and Mou.
He caught this moment in Netsuke.
This story is between you and me.
A secret laid bare Sweetcake
aptly named Loved his Netsuke
Each crumb and wrap of material
Belied his fate.

Fined 200 Yuan for once again being late.

Gabby Tyrrell
  



Poem 2
The tax collector
Carved by hands in ancient times in ivory
Or wood
the man who dressed in a hurry
late for the ceremony ran past me.
Robes unfurled like open sails
his hair slapdash.

Father in a time long gone watched and smiled
Carved this scene as Netsuke
-  this story between you and me.
The tax collector Sweetcake
Was fined 200 Yuan for his love of Netsuke
made him late once too often.

Now his wife makes him shop.
He always walking, put on a diet of veg and rice,
head bowed in front of his wife.

Gabby Tyrrell












Sunday, 26 May 2013

Gallery readings and readers for June 15th


12.30-13.50      14.40-16.00


Poet                  Name of poem              Object                         Gallery

S.Durie              All the World’s a Stage       Mask of Tragedy                  Greek gallery

Gabby Tyrell            Netsuke (Manju)                    Netsuke                                      ?

Nick Owen                Emperor                          Rubens  sketch                    Dutch gallery

Jenifer McGowan    Morning at the Maru-Aten Temple                                  Egyptian Gallery

Andrew Smardon

Vahni Capildeo

Diana Moore

Paulette Mae

Giles Watson



My apologies for not being able to provide details of poem names or galleries at this point. 

The weblog will be updated as the information flows in.

SAYING YES TO ZEUS

Tall Zeus, forgive the mean aspect of this standard and static depiction your admirers should find problematic: squared-off toenails, small ears, some parts one shan’t mention – for you hold the lightning bolt – but you don’t; even that is gone from this bronze copy.
All-seeing Zeus, overlook how we come close: your frown, your sinews, your ankles resemble the elderly athlete the museum claims this figure might be. You love mortality.
Dear Zeus. Our clouded heads forgot: the copy, and the copier, sportsman, model, statue, maker, are your originals. Through you we move. Through us, you move.
Lord of lightning, spinal fire that sexes the brain, nuclear waste: a great many feathers puncture my breast from within; as I rip, ridding myself of them, finding I cannot free myself, they vault outwards. Like everything, I am in your grasp and also flying.

It strikes me you are sometimes kind.

Vahni Capildeo

read at the May readings