Wandering in Woodacfe – 20 November 2020

This Date in Art History: Died 20 November 1918 – John Bauer, a Swedish painter and illustrator. He is perhaps best known for his illustrations for early editions of “Among Gnomes and Trolls,” an anthology of Swedish folklore and fairy tales.

Below – “The Fairy Princess”; “Still, Tuvstarr sits and gazes down into the water”; “Freja”; “Ester in the cottage”; “Root trolls”; “One evening around midsummer, they went with Bianca Maria deep into the forest.”

This Date in Literary History: Born 20 November 1936 – Don DeLillo, an American novelist, short story writer, playwright, screenwriter, essayist, author of “White Noise” and “Underworld,” and recipient of the National Book Award and the American Book Award.

Some quotes from the work of Don DeLillo:

“What you see is not what we see. What you see is distracted by memory, by being who you are, all this time, for all these years.”
“In this country there is a universal third person, the man we all want to be. Advertising has discovered this man. It uses him to express the possibilities open to the consumer. To consume in America is not to buy; it is to dream. Advertising is the suggestion that the dream of entering the third person singular might possibly be fulfilled.”
“Too much has been forgotten in the name of memory.”
“Sometimes I see something so moving I know I’m not supposed to linger. See it and leave. If you stay too long, you wear out the wordless shock. Love it and trust it and leave.”
I”t was the time of year, the time of day, for a small insistent sadness to pass into the texture of things. Dusk, silence, iron chill. Something lonely in the bone.”
“The true life is not reducible to words spoken or written, not by anyone, ever. The true life takes place when we’re alone, thinking, feeling, lost in memory, dreamingly self-aware, the submicroscopic moments.”
“And what’s the point of waking up in the morning if you don’t try to match the enormousness of the known forces in the world with something powerful in your own life?”

Contemporary British Art – Coleman Senecal

Below – “Into the Storm”; “Mountain Streams”; “Clearing Skies”; “Back Home”; “Dawning of the Day”; “Windswept.”

A Poem for Today

“At the Office Holiday Party”
by Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz

I can now confirm that I am not just fatter
than everyone I work with, but I’m also fatter
than all their spouses. Even the heavily bearded
bear in accounting has a little otter-like boyfriend.

When my co-workers brightly introduce me
as “the funny one in the office,” their spouses
give them a look which translates to, Well, duh,
then they both wait for me to say something funny.

A gaggle of models comes shrieking into the bar
to further punctuate why I sometimes hate living
in this city. They glitter, a shiny gang of scissors.
I don’t know how to look like I’m not struggling.

Sometimes on the subway back to Queens,
I can tell who’s staying on past the Lexington stop
because I have bought their shoes before at Payless.
They are shoes that fool absolutely no one.

Everyone wore their special holiday party outfits.
It wasn’t until I arrived at the bar that I realized
my special holiday party outfit was exactly the same
as the outfits worn by the restaurant’s busboys.

While I’m standing in line for the bathroom,
another patron asks if I’m there to clean it.

Below – Marcel Garbi: “Those I expect don’t exist”

Contemporary Lithuanian Art – Gia Ram

Below – “Heroes Will Save The Day”; “Her/ BubbleGum”; “Celestial”; “Selfie In Stars”; “Selfie In South Of France”; “Babe.”


Contemporary Ukrainian Art – Iryna Dzhul

Below (photographs) – “Unbroken”; “Rose”; “City soul”; “Invisible”; “In search of happiness.”


A Poem for Today

“Blank”
by George Bilgere

When I came to my mother’s house
the day after she had died
it was already a museum of her
unfinished gestures. The mysteries
from the public library, due
in two weeks. The half-eaten square
of lasagna in the fridge.

The half-burned wreckage
of her last cigarette,
and one red swallow
of wine in a lipsticked
glass beside her chair.

Finally, a blue Bic
on a couple of downs
and acrosses left blank
in the Sunday crossword,
which actually had the audacity
to look a little smug
at having, for once, won.

Below – Sylvia Komlosi: “Crossword”

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