Sentient in San Francisco – 26 March 2020

This Date in Art History: Died 26 March 1979 – Beauford Delaney, an American painter.

Below – “Can Fire in the Park”; Untitled; “Greene Street”; “Greenwich Village”; Untitled; Untitled.

This Date in Literary History: Died 26 March 1979 – Jean Stafford, an American short story writer, novelist, and recipient of the Pulitzer Prize.

Some quotes from the work of Jean Stafford:

“To her own heart, which was shaped exactly like a valentine, there came a winglike palpitation, a delicate exigency, and all the fragrance of all the flowery springtime love affairs that ever were seemed waiting for them in the whisky bottle. To mingle their pain their handshake had promised them, was to produce a separate entity, like a child that could shift for itself, and they scrambled hastily toward this profound and pastoral experience.”
“For all practical purposes I left home when I was 7.”
“She wanted them to go together to some hopelessly disreputable bar and to console one another in the most maudlin fashion over a lengthy succession of powerful drinks of whiskey, to compare their illnesses, to marry their invalid souls for these few hours of painful communion, and to babble with rapture that they were at last, for a little while, they were no longer alone.”
“He whirled round and round in his rapid love; it pricked him on the breastbone like a needle. He wanted to be shut up in a small space to think about it. He wanted to grab it and eat it like an apple so that nobody else could have it.”
“I fell in love with Caligula and now I’m married to Calvin.”
“For me, there is nothing worse than the knowledge that my life holds nothing for me but being a writer.”

Contemporary British Art – Naomi Vona

In the words of one writer, “Naomi Vona, is an Italian artist based in London. The artist defines herself as an ‘archival parasite, with no bad intentions’. Her works combines different interests like photography, collages and illustration.”

Below – “Sguardi Neri Sotto Cieli Neri 001”; “Text Me A Texture”; “Gentleman 001.”

This Date in Literary History: Died 26 March 2015 – Tomas Transtromer, a Swedish poet, translator, psychologist, and recipient of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Literature.

“The Stones”
by Tomas Transtromer
translated by Patty Crane

The stones we have thrown I hear
fall, glass-clear through the year. In the valley
confused actions of the moment
fly howling from tree-top
to tree-top, quieting
in air thinner than now’s, gliding
like swallows from mountain-top
to mountain-top till they
reach the furthest plateaus
along the edge of existence. Where
all our deeds fall
to no ending
except ourselves.

Contemporary American Art – Lisa Krannichfeld

Below – “Expose”; “Jacket (in shades of blue)”; “Limelight”; “I’ve Played Nice”; “Striped Sweater (in black and yellow).”

This Date in Literary History: Born 26 March 1942 – Erica Jong, an award-winning American novelist, satirist, poet, and author of “Fear of Flying.”

Some quotes from the work of Erica Jong:

“Dogs come into our lives to teach us about love and loyalty. They depart to teach us about loss. A new dog never replaces an old dog; it merely expands the heart. If you have loved many dogs, your heart is very big.”
“Do you want me to tell you something really subversive? Love is everything it’s cracked up to be. That’s why people are so cynical about it. It really is worth fighting for, being brave for, risking everything for. And the trouble is, if you don’t risk anything, you risk even more.”
“You see a lot of smart guys with dumb women, but you hardly ever see a smart woman with a dumb guy.”
“Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn’t.”
“Humor is one of the most serious tools we have for dealing with impossible situations.”
“As long as I’m facing the right direction, it doesn’t matter the size of my steps.”
“Take your life in your own hands, and what happens? A terrible thing: no one to blame.”

Contemporary American Art – Drew Doggett

Below (photographs) – “Winter’s Cover”; “Protector”; “Luminary”; “Point Reyes”; “Divine Messenger”; “A Moment in Time.”

This Date in Literary History: Born 26 March 1930 – Gregory Corso, an American poet of the Beat Generation.

“The Mad Yak”
by Gregory Corso

I am watching them churn the last milk they’ll ever get from me.
They are waiting for me to die;
They want to make buttons out of my bones.
Where are my sisters and brothers?
That tall monk there, loading my uncle, he has a new cap.
And that idiot student of his — I never saw that muffler before.
Poor uncle, he lets them load him.
How sad he is, how tired!
I wonder what they’ll do with his bones?
And that beautiful tail!
How many shoelaces will they make of that!

Contemporary American Art – Maria Folger: Part I of II.

Below – “Sun Kiss”; “Love”; Untitled; “Love”; Untitled.

This Date in Literary History: Died 26 March 2016 – Jim Harrison, an American poet, novelist, and essayist.

Some quotes from the work of Jim Harrison:

“The simple act of opening a bottle of wine has brought more happiness to the human race than all the collective governments in the history of earth.”
“The danger of civilization, of course, is that you will piss away your life on nonsense.”
“In a life properly lived, you’re a river.”
“The wilderness does not make you forget your normal life so much as it removes the distractions for proper remembering.”
“Death steals everything except our stories.”
“Life is sentimental. Why should I be cold and hard about it? That’s the main content. The biggest thing in people’s lives is their loves and dreams and visions, you know.”
“We Are All One. When we allow ourselves to become aware of this statement in its purest form, we open the doors to reveal the oneness of being. Using the process of conscious evolution we begin to recognise our true underlying identity, for once we have glimpsed the existence of this realm, we then begin to reveal what it is . . . . our true natural state.”
“The world that used to nurse us now keeps shouting inane instructions. That’s why I ran to the woods.”
“Poetry at its best is the language your soul would speak if you could teach your soul to speak.”
“I did not want to live out my life in the strenuous effort to hold a ghost world together. It was plain as the stars that time herself moved in grand tidal sweeps rather than the tick-tocks we suffocate within, and that I must reshape myself to fully inhabit the earth rather than dawdle in the sump of my foibles.”
“I’m hoping to be astonished tomorrow by I don’t know what.”

Contemporary American Art – Maria Folger: Part II of II.

Below – “The Beach”; “Polka dots”; Untitled; “Normal”; “Be Happy.”

This Date in Literary History: Born 26 March 1859 – A. E. Housman, an English poet.

“To an Athlete Dying Young”
by A. E. Housman

The time you won your town the race
We chaired you through the market-place;
Man and boy stood cheering by,
And home we brought you shoulder-high.

To-day, the road all runners come,
Shoulder-high we bring you home,
And set you at your threshold down,
Townsman of a stiller town.

Smart lad, to slip betimes away
From fields where glory does not stay
And early though the laurel grows
It withers quicker than the rose.

Eyes the shady night has shut
Cannot see the record cut,
And silence sounds no worse than cheers
After earth has stopped the ears:

Now you will not swell the rout
Of lads that wore their honours out,
Runners whom renown outran
And the name died before the man.

So set, before its echoes fade,
The fleet foot on the sill of shade,
And hold to the low lintel up
The still-defended challenge-cup.

And round that early-laurelled head
Will flock to gaze the strengthless dead,
And find unwithered on its curls
The garland briefer than a girl’s.

Contemporary Italian Art – Carmelita Iezzi

Below (photographs) – “Write me a poem of silence”; “Poem of silence”; “Meraki”; “The silence of the words”; “El Último Aliento Del Invierno”; “Surreal winter.”

This Date in Literary/Cultural History: Born 26 March 1904 – Joseph Campbell, an influential American mythologist and author of many excellent books, including “The Hero with a Thousand Faces.”

Some quotes from the work of Joseph Campbell:

“We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.”
“Life has no meaning. Each of us has meaning and we bring it to life. It is a waste to be asking the question when you are the answer.”
“Behind all these manifestations is the one radiance, which shines through all things.”
“You must have a room, or a certain hour or so a day, where you don’t know what was in the newspapers that morning, you don’t know who your friends are, you don’t know what you owe anybody, you don’t know what anybody owes to you. This is a place where you can simply experience and bring forth what you are and what you might be. This is the place of creative incubation. At first you may find that nothing happens there. But if you have a sacred place and use it, something eventually will happen.”
“If the path before you is clear, you’re probably on someone else’s.”
“You are more than you think you are. There are dimensions of your being and a potential for realization and consciousness that are not included in your concept of yourself. Your life is much deeper and broader than you conceive it to be here. What you are living is but a fractional inkling of what is really within you, what gives you life, breadth, and depth.”
“We’re not on our journey to save the world but to save ourselves. But in doing that you save the world. The influence of a vital person vitalizes.”
“The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek. Fear of the unknown is our greatest fear. Many of us would enter a tiger’s lair before we would enter a dark cave. While caution is a useful instinct, we lose many opportunities and much of the adventure of life if we fail to support the curious explorer within us.”
“Furthermore, we have not even to risk the adventure alone; for the heroes of all time have gone before us; the labyrinth is thoroughly known; we have only to follow the thread of the hero-path. And where we had thought to find an abomination, we shall find a god; where we had thought to slay another, we shall slay ourselves; where we had thought to travel outward, we shall come to the center of our own existence; and where we had thought to be alone, we shall be with all the world.”

Contemporary Ukrainian Art – Dina Filatov: Part I of II.

Below – “Old School”; “An Altar of Birds. The Sparrow is static”; “Teenager”; “Children QR”; “Saint business.”

This Date in Literary History: Died 26 March 1892 – Walt Whitman, an American poet, essayist, and journalist.

Verse 52 from “Song of Myself”
By Walt Whitman

The spotted hawk swoops by and accuses me—he complains of my gab and my loitering.
I too am not a bit tamed—I too am untranslatable;
I sound my barbaric yawp over the roofs of the world.

The last scud of day holds back for me;
It flings my likeness after the rest, and true as any, on the shadow’d wilds;
It coaxes me to the vapor and the dusk.

I depart as air—I shake my white locks at the runaway sun;
I effuse my flesh in eddies, and drift it in lacy jags.

I bequeathe myself to the dirt, to grow from the grass I love;
If you want me again, look for me under your boot-soles.

You will hardly know who I am, or what I mean;
 But I shall be good health to you nevertheless,
And filter and fibre your blood.

Failing to fetch me at first, keep encouraged;
Missing me one place, search another;
I stop somewhere, waiting for you.

Contemporary Ukrainian Art – Dina Filatov: Part II of II.

Below – “They Are Coming”; “Only Lambs, only to Heaven”; “Zeus”; “An Altar of Birds. The tit is eager for knowledge.”

This Date in Literary History: Born 26 March 1874 – Robert Frost, an American poet and four-time recipient of the Pulitzer Prize.

“The Road Not Taken”
by Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

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