Thursday, March 29, 2012



Suppose what of red. Border integration, but not anxious. Cascade.
Sometimes empty. Arisen. Thought cloud. Perhaps a circle, perhaps
a vessel, a constellation. Interference. Inevitable irregularities, but
still. Text and just almost. I'm asking you. A pool. A spool. Sub-
version. Mapping the alternatives. Arrest. Not prime. Isle of Man.
Spice. If ever, water, trip, collide, focus. Distillation thereof.
However. Please. Beneath the threshold. Unless. Immediately.
Gradual realizations. Breath. Sure, there's noise, water. Replete
for single. Master. Integumentary. Among of green stiff old.
That too. What's possible. What's right. Spiral? Always okay.

Process Reflection:

The image is one of a series I was working on recently combining watercolor, ink, and collage. I usually work with those separately, but here I was playing with the combinations. As you might guess from looking at the text fragment, it's small, about 3.5" x 5.5". Just playing with juxtapositions, what I could do inside of a rectangle. Several kinds of balancing acts going on simultaneously: colors, forms, shapes, objects (of which there are five configured in a rough circle). Collage is about putting found objects, or created objects, or both together, in order to see what happens. Some kind of energy, some kind of coherence. I've become interested in how one goes about "reading" a collage or other type of abstract art, which turns out to involve a willingness to simply be present to the experience, to accept the suchness and thusness of what is without trying to impose a logic upon it. The work of art is a field of energies defining their own little universe. Spending some time in that world is a kind of tourism. What is this all about? How is this one different from the last one? The next one? The one you live in now? The one you construct in your dreams (or your dreams construct in you)?

The poem, if that's what you'd call it, is an attempt to replicate or re-enact the same process using words instead of objects. The words and phrases are in some (intentional) sense random, and in some (intuitive) sense connected both to each other and to the image they are intended to mirror. Because they are words, we want them to add up to something beyond what they are, words. As they do. As they must. But not in the way they ordinarily do. The ordinary rules aren't in play. So the experience of reading is bent or altered as well. Taken together, they add up to... something. It's recognizable as a poem. It even includes a quote from a (just slightly less oblique) poem (by William Carlos Williams). But it's not going to speak except in its own voice.

Writing this way is harder than it might at first appear. But like all purposeful play, it has its satisfactions.


1 comment:

sonyamarieseng said...

This is very interesting. I would substitute a different label for the "movies" quadrant, because movies with a budget are not an exploration but are highly predetermined by a formulaic script banked on for the box office returns. I might try "improvisation" as in Saturday Night Live or Second City or Whose Line is It Anyway. Or perhaps shopping at ROSS, because you know you will greedily sift through the racks but who knows what you will leave with?

That aside, an interesting process locator. Can't wait to hear how you're supposed to travel up and to the right.

thanks for sharing!