From the Pacific Northwest – Part XVII

Musings in Autumn: Clyde Watson

“November comes
And November goes,
With the last red berries
And the first white snows.

With night coming early,
And dawn coming late,
And ice in the bucket
And frost by the gate.

The fires burn
And the kettles sing,
And earth sinks to rest
Until next spring.”

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Below – From the 17th Annual American Impressionist National Juried Exhibition that is being held this year at the Howard/Mandville Gallery in Kirkland, Washington: Dawn Whitelaw, “The Grandeur Lingers.”

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A Poem for Today

“Fixed Interval”
By Devin Johnston

When he turns fifteen, you’ll be fifty-four.
When he turns thirty, you’ll be sixty-nine.
This plain arithmetic amazes more
than miracle, the constant difference more
than mere recursion of father in son.
If you reach eighty, he’ll be forty-one!

The same sun wheels around again, the dawn
drawn out and hammered thin as a copper sheet.
When he turns sixty you’ll be gone.
Compacted mud, annealed by summer heat,
two ruts incise this ghost-forsaken plain
and keep their track width, never to part or meet.

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Canadian Art – Part I: Daphne Odjig

In the words of one writer, “Celebrated artist Daphne Odjig was born in 1919 on the Wikwemikong Reserve, Manitoulin Island. Her heritage is a combination of Odawa, Potawatomi and English roots, the Native aspects of which were revealed to Odjig as a child on sketching excursions with her grandfather. From him, a stone-carver, she learned not only the legends of her ancestors, but also the use of curvilinear design for which she has become so well known.
Odjig had painted for most of the years of her life, but it was in the 1960’s that she began to exhibit a deliberately Native perspective in her work and, like her grandfather, felt compelled to try to instruct the young about their heritage. To do so, she began to focus her art-making upon the legends, joys and realities of aboriginal life, while simultaneously refining her signature style of utilizing clear colours, soft, curving contours enclosed in black outlining, transparency and overlapping of shapes and modernist, abstracted figuration.”

Below – “With Granny”; “Day’s End”; “Husking Corn”; “Hide N’ Seek – Childhood Remembrances”; “Piggy Back – Childhood Remembrances”; “Fetching Water – Childhood Remembrances.”

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Musings in Autumn: Aspen Matis

“The trees were friendly, they gave me rest and shadowed refuge. Slipping through them, I felt safe and competent. My whole body was occupied. I had little energy to think or worry.”

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A Second Poem for Today

“Succession”
By Jeffrey Brown

One morning state police
escort us to your grave
the next my flight is canceled.
Maintenance issues breaking
out all over. You would speak
of a “grand theory,” something
tying all this together, but
you had none yourself, none
that reached me then or now
as I drive your car slowly
into the tranquil streets
of my youth. Here is where
I learned to ride a bike, on
this high hill that is no
hill at all. And still I fell.
And now you descend and
still I fall. And here is where
I learned to doubt, in the chapel
where we donned black skullcaps
that meant nothing, I tell you.
If god speaks it is elsewhere.
And here are my own children
rooted and uncertain
watching me speak to you.
You watched the news every night
worried if I did not make “air”—
traveling, sick, useless, lost.
Now that you are gone—
traffic parted by the state police—
can I, too, disappear?

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Below – From the 17th Annual American Impressionist National Juried Exhibition that is being held this year at the Howard/Mandville Gallery in Kirkland, Washington: Toni Williams, “Rancho Santa Fe.”

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Musings in Autumn: L.M. Montgomery

“But there is always a November space after the leaves have fallen when she felt it was almost indecent to intrude on the woods…for their glory terrestrial had departed and their glory celestial of spirit and purity and whiteness had not yet come upon them.”

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A Third Poem for Today

“this kind of fire”
By Charles Bukowski

sometimes I think the gods
deliberately keep pushing me
into the fire
just to hear me
yelp
a few good
lines.

they just aren’t going to
let me retire
silk scarf about neck
giving lectures at
Yale.

the gods need me to
entertain them.

they must be terribly
bored with all
the others.

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Musings in Autumn: J.K. Rowling

“October extinguished itself in a rush of howling winds and driving rain and November arrived, cold as frozen iron, with hard frosts every morning and icy drafts that bit at exposed hands and faces.”

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Canadian Art – Part II: Michael O’Toole

In the words of one writer, “Michael O’Toole was born and raised in British Columbia. He attended BCIT where he studied architectural design and later moved to Toronto to work for several architectural firms. Eventually he was drawn back to the beautiful West Coast where he now resides.
Michael’s love for design led him to explore his creativity in variety of media including watercolour, pen and ink, graphite, gouache and acrylic. Currently focusing on acrylics, his diverse subject matter ranges from landscape and seascape, to architecture and portraiture. His vivid and dramatic style is inspired by his former instructor, renowned artist Charles M. Svob and other impressionists. His travels both locally and internationally have also been a tremendous source of inspiration.”

Below – “Mystery in the Rockies”; “Tusk”; “Beached on the West Coast Trail”; “The Search For That Special Moment In Time”; “Moonrise Over Still Tides”; “Autumn in the Valley.”

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