Wandering in Woodacre – 23 September 2020

This Date in Art History: Born 23 September 1852 -James Carroll Beckwith, an American painter.

Below – “Woman with Guitar”; “A Wistful Look”; “Bassin de Neptune, Versailles”; “Mark Twain”; “Portrait of Evelyn Nesbitt.”

A Poem for Today

“Sixth Grade”
by Jeanie Greensfelder

We didn’t like each other,
but Lynn’s mother had died,
and my father had died.

Lynn’s father didn’t know how to talk to her,
my mother didn’t know how to talk to me,
and Lynn and I didn’t know how to talk either.

A secret game drew us close:
we took turns being the prisoner,
who stood, hands held behind her back,

while the captor, using an imaginary bow,
shot arrow after arrow after arrow
into the prisoner’s heart.

Below – Will Beger: “No Bow”

This Date in Art History: Born 23 September 1865 – Pekka Halonen, a Finnish painter.

Below – “Sunday in a Settler Cottage”; “The Short Cut”; “Meal”; “Woman in a Boat”; “Log Drivers”; “Summer Sporting.”

A Poem for Today

“First Morel”
by Amy Fleury

Up from wood rot,
wrinkling up from duff
and homely damps,
spore-born and cauled
like a meager seer,
it pushes aside earth
to make a small place
from decay. Bashful,
it brings honeycombed
news from below
of the coming plenty
and everything rising.

Below – Austin Yirkovsky: “Morel Watching the Grazing Deer”

Contemporary Czech Art – Martin Stranka

Below (photographs) – “Close”;“Wait A Little Longer”; “I Am Winter”; “I Was Falling High”; “I Came So Close”; “White Night.”

A Poem for Today

“On the Way to the Airport”
by Donna Spector

You’re speeding me down the Ventura freeway
in your battered Scout, patched since your angry
crash into the drunken pole that swerved into your road.
We’ve got no seat belts, no top, bald tires,
so I clutch any metal that seems as though it might
be firm, belie its rusted rattling. Under my
August burn I’m fainting white, but I’m trying
to give you what you want: an easy mother.

For the last two days you’ve been plugged
into your guitar, earphones on, door closed. I spoiled
our holiday with warnings about your accidental
life, said this time I wouldn’t rescue you, knowing
you’d hate me, knowing I’d make myself sick. We’re
speaking now, the airport is so near, New York closer
than my birthday tomorrow, close as bearded death
whose Porsche just cut us off in the fast lane.

When you were three, you asked if God lived
under the street. I said I didn’t know, although
a world opened under my feet walking with you
over strange angels, busy arranging our fate. Soon,
if we make it, I’ll be in the air, where people say God lives,
the line between you and me stretched thinner,
thinner but tight enough still to bind us,
choke us both with love. Your Scout, putty-colored
as L.A. mornings, protests loudly but hangs on.

Contemporary German Art – David Snider

Below – “New Day”; “Evergreen II”; “Land Near and Far”; “Beyond the Hill”; “On a Clear Day…”; “East Coast 3.”

A Poem for Today

“After the Funeral”
by Peter Everwine

We opened closets and bureau drawers
and packed away, in boxes, dresses and shoes,
the silk underthings still wrapped in tissue.
We sorted through cedar chests. We gathered
and set aside the keepsakes and the good silver
and brought up from the coal cellar
jars of tomato sauce, peppers, jellied fruit.
We dismantled, we took down from the walls,
we bundled and carted off and swept clean.
Goodbye, goodbye, we said, closing
the door behind us, going our separate ways
from the house we had emptied,
and which, in the coming days, we would fill
again and empty and try to fill again.

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