Sentient in Seattle – 28 March 2018

A Poem for Today

“The Sun Underfoot Among The Sundews”
by Amy Clampitt

An ingenuity too astonishing
to be quite fortuitous is
this bog full of sundews, sphagnum-
lined and shaped like a teacup.
A step
down and you’re into it; a
wilderness swallows you up:
ankle-, then knee-, then midriff-
to-shoulder-deep in wetfooted
understory, an overhead
spruce-tamarack horizon hinting
you’ll never get out of here.
But the sun
among the sundews, down there,
is so bright, an underfoot
webwork of carnivorous rubies,
a star-swarm thick as the gnats
they’re set to catch, delectable
double-faced cockleburs, each
hair-tip a sticky mirror
afire with sunlight, a million
of them and again a million,
each mirror a trap set to
unhand believing,
that either
a First Cause said once, “Let there
be sundews,” and there were, or they’ve
made their way here unaided
other than by that backhand, round-
about refusal to assume responsibility
known as Natural Selection.
But the sun
underfoot is so dazzling
down there among the sundews,
there is so much light
in that cup that, looking,
you start to fall upward.

Art for Spring – Part I of III: Eda Varricchio (Italian, contemporary)

Below – “Impatience”; “Barrel of Bulbs”; Untitled Landscape

Remembering a Composer on the Date of HIs Death: Died 28 March 1943 – Sergei Rachmaninoff, a Russian composer, pianist, and conductor.

Art for Spring – Part II of IIII: James Verbicky (Canadian, contemporary)

Below – “Stare III Triptych”; “Rusted Memory”; “Of the Earth Diptych”

Worth a Thousand Words: A vineyard in Tuscany.

Art for Spring – Part III of III: John Vignari (American, 1919-2014)

Below – “Little Boy Blue”; “Translucent Wave”; “Big Sur Coast”

Remembering a Performer on the Date of His Birth: Born 28 March 1972 – Nick Frost, an English actor, comedian, author, and screenwriter.

This Date in Art History: Died 28 March 1985 – Marc Chagall, a Russian-French painter.

Below – “I Am Ulysses”; “La Saison d’ete”; “Le Cirque”; “Le Ballet”; “Roses and Mimosa”; “Self-Portrait.”


Remembering a Writer on the Date of Her Death: Died 28 March 1941 – Virginia Woolf, an English novelist, essayist, short story writer, and critic.

Some quotes from the work of Virginia Woolf:

“Lock up your libraries if you like; but there is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind.”
“Books are the mirrors of the soul.”
“As a woman I have no country. As a woman I want no country. As a woman, my country is the whole world.”
“I am rooted, but I flow.”
“A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.”
“I can only note that the past is beautiful because one never realises an emotion at the time. It expands later, and thus we don’t have complete emotions about the present, only about the past.”
“If you do not tell the truth about yourself you cannot tell it about other people.”
“Growing up is losing some illusions, in order to acquire others.”
“When you consider things like the stars, our affairs don’t seem to matter very much, do they?”

Below – Virginia Woolf in 1902; photograph by George Charles Beresford.


Contemporary American Art – Sequoia C. Versillee

In the words of one writer, “Versillee’s is a realist painter whose contemporary representational works straddle the boundary between magical and romantic realism. Storytelling, symbolism and myth play important roles in her paintings and her goal as a artist is not to doggedly duplicate realistic depictions of subjects, but to capture the essence of a subject through the careful use of tone, texture, composition and light.”

Below – “Sun: Clouded Sulphur Butterfly”; “Moon: Lunar Moth”; “Horse Over Crow”; “Other Dove”; “Whitebird”; “Un Brio Escondido II.”


A Second Poem for Today

“Barter”
by Sara Teasdale

Life has loveliness to sell,
All beautiful and splendid things,
Blue waves whitened on a cliff,
Soaring fire that sways and sings,
And children’s faces looking up
Holding wonder like a cup.

Life has loveliness to sell,
Music like a curve of gold,
Scent of pine trees in the rain,
Eyes that love you, arms that hold,
And for your spirit’s still delight,
Holy thoughts that star the night.

Spend all you have for loveliness,
Buy it and never count the cost;
For one white singing hour of peace
Count many a year of strife well lost,
And for a breath of ecstasy
Give all you have been, or could be.


Contemporary American Art – Veloy Vigil

In the words of one writer, “Born in Denver, Colorado, he was raised on farms around Greeley, Colorado. On his mother’s side, he was descended from Pueblo Indians and on his father’s side from the Spanish. He is credited with a profound impact on people ideas about Native American art because, rather than naive, his images were abstract expressionist. But Vigil gave it his own flowing style, frequently painting to music.”

Below – “Earth to Sky”; “Red Roan”; “Grey Wind”; Untitled; “Rainbow Dance”; “Earth and Cedar” (bronze).

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