Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

Moving From Santa fe   Leave a comment

Moving From Santa Fe

there are those things that mean something

and all the odd shapes and shadows to pack away

luckily the 5-inch origami swan that came

with promises of luck fits in the double-boiler pan

in a box marked “kitchen”


what to bury in the yard, what to bury in a box

keep the dog’s ashes?  holding her beaded collar

brings back the reds and blues bright on her black fur

this move is a chasm, a crevice, a break

this time she goes alone without the man or the old dog


she packs two hearts, one glass, one with Frida Kahlo’s face

both breakable         puts the book of love poems by Pablo Neruda

beside the moon-gazing hares because the fit is right

it’s said Neruda never learned division

not good at splits and break-ups


she packs, runs the clear tape across the box, sighs

pulls black marker from pocket and  writes on the box

out-of-work swan, Tucker’s collar, crevices,  pots, pans,

Pablo poems, moonless hares, and bits of lonely


recipes for calabacitas and biscochitos go in a box

memories of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains

pressed into box corners and coat pockets

another leaving with things that refuse the box –

goodbyes can’t be pushed inside


or the skipping raven carrying the red hanky

the same raven who caws good morning

from the cottonwood tree everyday


who will answer her tomorrow?


Mary Strong Jackson

July 12, 2015


Posted August 13, 2015 by strongjacksonpoet54 in Art, poetry

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Marcel Duchamp   Leave a comment

Art hurts. Art urges voyages – and it is easier to stay at home.
Gwendolyn Brooks

Visual artist Marcel Duchamp said, “The creative act is not performed by the artist alone; the spectator brings the work in contact with the external world by deciphering and interpreting its inner qualifications and thus adds his contribution to the creative art.”  Emily Dickinson said, “ If I read a book and it makes my whole body so cold no fire can ever warm me. I know that is poetry.” Ever feel like your senses need a good shock to wake them like the dare you accepted to make a naked snow angel in below freezing weather? Maybe it is a severe case of spring fever that makes one cry out for a change of venue for the emotions, the senses, and the mind.

What else makes the created haunted house fun at Halloween but the unexpected and allowing one’s self  to be frightened even when he/she knows it is safe. Tidy happy endings make for feel-good movies, but the unexpected in films, the ones that touch deeply and make our senses sit up and take notice are most likely the less tidy ones with loose ends never quite wrapped up. These films remain in the mind long afterward like a great novel. Art takes us from our comfort zone and pushes buttons that excite or cause unease but what a ride if we allow ourselves to be taken.

Marcel Duchamp lived in Paris in the early 1900s and it was the most amazing locale in the world for artists at that time. Roger Shattuck writes about Paris in his book “The Banquet Years.” He says that old ways of expression were challenged and exciting changes in art occurred daily in a raucous carnival atmosphere. In an attempt to fuse art and life as a means of forging a new personality nothing could be normal any longer in the old sense. Artists of this time period set out to extend the artistic creative self until it displaced all guises of habit, social behavior, virtue and vice. Artists and writers came to Paris in droves to experience this creative energy and life. Male waiters went on strike for the right to grow beards, feminists demonstrated, painters, writers and musicians lived together and tried their hands at each other’s works in an atmosphere of collaboration. Artists banded together in what came to be known as the avant-garde, the unorthodox and experimental in art and living. They created a tradition of people who defied civilized values in the name of individualized consciousness.

Duchamp came of age at this time. He had grown-up in a household of artists and is said to have had a precocious talent for drawing, so it is understandable that he quickly bored with continuing the same old art that had been done, and he did not have a desire to paint in the same way as his older brothers. Duchamp has been compared to Leonardo da Vinci in that both men were dedicated to the concept of art as idea, art as a mental act. Duchamp rebelled against the “craft” of painting. He thought that just copying what one sees was stupid, especially with the advent of photography. Many believe him to be the most influential artist of the twentieth century, because his belief that art is about ideas reached through decades and we see his influence on conceptual artists of the past 40 years.

It seems ironic that the Cubists, artists who pushed the boundaries of art themselves, were critical of Marcel Duchamp’s work, most notable his piece “Nude Descending a Staircase” which caused much discussion and disgust at the New York Armory Show in 1913. There is no discernible nude in the painting, but the early Cubists held the objects in their work to a limited subject matter and nudes, recognizable or not, were not one of these. They used everyday objects such as a guitar, carafe, a table, but nudes were not considered proper subjects. The Cubists considered the Duchamp piece the work of a Futurist because it portrayed movement, which suggested time passing. But perhaps the Cubists were feeling and just what this column is proposing that Duchamp’s piece stirred their senses, and did just what art should do –shake you up, make you wonder, feel, and think. For Duchamp good taste is no less harmful than bad, and we all know that what was tasteful yesterday may not be considered tasteful today.

Marcel Duchamp rebelled against all previous theories of accepted art, which dictated subject matter, perspective, and materials. He rebelled against retinal art; art that is attractive to the eye rather than to the mind. Being a participant in an artist’s work gives one the opportunity to engage one’s mind, to be transformed, to wonder, to imagine and to allow the complicated, or not, action of the unconscious mind to complete the work. Each of us as viewer, reader, and listener is needed to complete an artist’s work. Our response to a work of art creates an individual, subjective and wondrous action and gives the creation the gift of posterity.

Posted January 17, 2011 by strongjacksonpoet54 in Art, Essays

Film by Carlos Reygadas, “Silent Light”   4 comments

Wow! Mexican director Carlos Reygadas’ film “Silent Light” is one of my new favorites. It is stark, austere with the most amazing sound and light. He allows sound its time with out the chatter of dialogue and other noise intruding. The sound of water lapping while children are bathed outdoors, the sounds of crickets, cows, a combine in the field,  all amongst the charged, but outwardly silent emotions happening in a family. I cannot wait to see more of Reygadas’ work.

Posted November 14, 2010 by strongjacksonpoet54 in Art, FIlm

A testament to your time on earth   Leave a comment

Words from Christian Wiman poet and editor of Poetry about being the judge of your own poems and not being obsessed with recognition. Wiman says about poems, “They’re a testament  to your time on earth, and to how well you’ve stood up to it. In the case of my poems. I feel confident–not about quality, but about their necessity in my life.”

Posted November 5, 2010 by strongjacksonpoet54 in Art, Have a Chair

  Leave a comment

The basic element of every culture is ART. (David Dory)

Every culture is defined by its artists. (David Dory)

Posted August 19, 2010 by strongjacksonpoet54 in Art, Have a Chair

Have A Chair   Leave a comment

Posted August 19, 2010 by strongjacksonpoet54 in Art, Have a Chair

Violent Femmes Country Death Song lyrics   Leave a comment

I had me a wife, I had me some daughters.
I tried so hard, I never knew still waters.
Nothing to eat and nothing to drink.
Nothing for a man to do but sit around and think.
Nothing for a man to do but sit around and think.
Well, I’m a thinkin’ and thinkin’, ’til there’s nothin’ I ain’t thunk.
Breathing in the stink, ’til finally I stunk.
It was at that time, I swear I lost my mind.
I started making plans to kill my own kind.
I started making plans to kill my own kind.
Come little daughter, I said to the youngest one,
Put your coat on, we’ll have some fun.
We’ll go out to mountains, the one to explore.
Her face then lit up, I was standing by the door.
Her face then lit up, I was standing by the door.
Come little daughter, I will carry the lanterns.
We’ll go out tonight, we’ll go to the caverns.
We’ll go out tonight, we’ll go to the caves.
Kiss your mother goodnight and remember that God saves.
Kiss your mother goodnight and remember that God saves.
A led her to a hole, a deep black well.
I said make a wish, make sure and not tell and
close you’re eyes dear, and count to seven.
You know your papa loves you, good children go to heaven.
You know your papa loves you, good children go to heaven.
I gave her a push, I gave her a shove.
I pushed with all my might, I pushed with all my love.
I threw my child into a bottomless pit.
She was screaming as she fell, but I never heard her hit.
She was screaming as she fell, but I never heard her hit.
Gather round boys to this tale that I tell.
You wanna know how to take a short trip to hell?
It’s guaranteed to get your own place in hell.
Just take your lovely daughter and push her in the well.
Take your lovely daughter and throw her in the well.
Don’t speak to me of lovers, with a broken heart.
You wanna know what can really tear you apart?
I’m going out to the barn, with a never stoppin’ pain!
I’m going out to the barn, to hang myself in shame.

Posted August 16, 2010 by strongjacksonpoet54 in Art, Uncategorized

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