Oct 26, 2008


I am working with an old poem called Choreography. It really needs to be reworked but using it in a painting is a great way to get ideas for revisions. Part of my project this quarter is that I am trying to find a less literal way of making art with poems. I don't want to get caught in illustrating the scene or events of a poem. I want to use the poem for a starting point. It's challenging and brings up many questions:
Does the viewer need to be able to read the poem?
Does the poem need to be legible within the art piece?
Does the piece need to encompass the entirety of the poem?

Ultimately I think I could answer no to all those questions but ideally I think I would like to be able to achieve a yes to all of them.

Anyways this is the first time I have made so many experiments toward one aim and these are only my favorites, there's more. It's fun but I feel uninterested in making any finished pieces.


The birch branches
break the swirling sky
into a grey mosaic
with birds blooming
like black blossoms on vines.

Some squawk,
some circle around perches,
making exchanges.

They burst all at once from the birch
and scatter with the ruckus of crows.
A moment later they return
filtering into new roosts.

I crouch behind the open window, watching.
The chill of fog and solitude sifts
through my skin, unbinding shyness,
casting out charm, casting out
my choreographies of what it all means.
I will wait like a crow now,
for my wings to lift
or the flutter of another’s beside me.