Sentient in San Francisco – 10 June 2019

This Date in Art History: Born 10 June 1907 – Fairfield Porter, an American painter: Part I of II.

Below – “Under the Elms”; “Girl in a Landscape”; “Anne in a Striped Dress”; “July”; “Late Afternoon Snow”; “July Interior.”

This Date in Literary History: Born 10 June 1925 – James Salter, an award-winning American novelist and short story writer. 

Some quotes from the work of James Salter:

“To write? Because all this is going to vanish. The only thing left will be the prose and poems, the books, what is written down. Man was very fortunate to have invented the book. Without it the past would completely vanish, and we would be left with nothing, we would be naked on earth.”

“There comes a time when you realize that everything is a dream, and only those things preserved in writing have any possibility of being real.”

“Certain things I remember exactly as they were. They are merely discolored a bit by time, like coins in the pocket of a forgotten suit. Most of the details, though, have long since been transformed or rearranged to bring others of them forward. Some, in fact, are obviously counterfeit; they are no less important. One alters the past to form the future.”

This Date in Art History: Born 10 June 1907 – Fairfield Porter, an American painter: Part II of II.

Below – “The Mirror”; “Iced Coffee”; “Wild Roses”; “Still Life with Stapler”; “Apple Blossoms II”; “Self-Portrait.”

This Date in Literary History: Died 10 June 1973 – William Inge, an American novelist, playwright, and recipient of the Pulitzer Prize.

Some quotes from the work of William Inge: 

“Worry is interest paid on trouble before it comes due.”

“We have enslaved the rest of the animal creation, and have treated our distant cousins in fur and feathers so badly that beyond doubt, if they were able to formulate a religion, they would depict the Devil in human form.”

“Nobody is bored when he is trying to make something that is beautiful or to discover something that is true.”

“A nation is a society united by a delusion about its ancestry and by common hatred of its neighbors.”

“Joy is the triumph of life; it is the sign that we are living our true life as spiritual beings.”

“Don’t break the silence unless you can improve on it.”

“Bereavement is the deepest initiation into the mysteries of human life, an initiation more searching and profound than even happy love.”

“Experience is a good teacher, but her fees are very high.”

This Date in Art History: Born 10 June 1953 – Eileen Cooper, an English painter and printmaker.

Below – “Interval”; “Hear the Wind Cry I”; “Pause”; “Source”; “Clio.”

This Date in Literary History: Died 10 June 1958 – Angelina Weld Grimke, an American poet, journalist, and playwright who came to prominence during the Harlem Renaissance.

“The Eyes of My Regret”

by Angelina Weld Grimke

Always at dusk, the same tearless experience,

The same dragging of feet up the same well-worn path

To the same well-worn rock;

The same crimson or gold dropping away of the sun

The same tints, – rose, saffron, violet, lavender, grey

Meeting, mingling, mixing mistily;

Before me the same blue black cedar rising jaggedly to 

a point;

Over it, the same slow unlidding of twin stars,

Two eyes, unfathomable, soul-searing,

Watching, watching, watching me;

The same two eyes that draw me forth, against my will

dusk after dusk;

The same two eyes that keep me sitting late into the

night, chin on knees

Keep me there lonely, rigid, tearless, numbly

miserable –

The eyes of my Regret. 

 

Contemporary American Art – Nina Hunter

Below – “That summer feeling”; “Golden Flowers”; “Harvey Nichols window display”; “Flowers. Still Life.”

A Poem for Today

“Brief Eden”

by Lois Beebe Hayna

For part of one strange year we lived 

in a small house at the edge of a wood. 

No neighbors, which suited us. Nobody 

to ask questions. Except 

for the one big question we went on 

asking ourselves.

That spring 

myriads of birds stopped over

briefly. Birds we’d never seen before, drawn 

to our leafy quiet and our brook and because, 

as we later learned, the place lay beneath 

a flyway. Flocks appeared overnight—birds 

brilliant or dull, with sharp beaks

or crossed bills, birds small 

and enormous, all of them pausing 

to gorge at the feeder, to rest their wings, 

and disappear. Each flock seemed surer than we 

of a destination. By the time we’d watched them 

wing north in spring, then make 

an anxious autumn return, 

we too had pulled it together and we too moved 

into what seemed to be our lives.

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