HOW LOOKING AT ART EXHIBITS AFFECTED MY FORMATION OF THE ARC OF POETRY BOOKS
There was a time when I was writing art reviews much more than I do nowadays. These weren't conventional art crits. They manifested a period when I was deep into exploring notions of subjectivity, and so I was exploring the insertion of my "I/Eye" into art reviewing prose.
A selection of this art prose comprises my favorite section in SILENCES. And you can see an example of such art "reviews" at the BEACH HOUSE. It's a review of a 2001 exhibition by Christian Vincent (in entertainment mode, I nota bene that he's married to the actress Peri Gilpin best known for playing "Roz" in the TV sitcom Frasier, although Gilpin's Wikipedia entry erroneously links her husband to be a dancer of the same name instead of the artist -- ah, the things you learn from reading Moi!).
Anyway, my review of this Christian Vincent exhibit also exemplifies a narrative reading/viewing that I applied to groupings of paintings -- which I just realized might have influenced how I've chosen to structure poetry books for some intended arc (versus to present a collection of individual poems). I've long thought that looking at artwork is my single most significant teacher in how I might write poems.
And to further differentiate my art reviews from others, I'd often inserted poems in such prose (often playing with the seeming arbitrariness of the juxtapositions). In this review, I inserted poems by Edgar Allan Poe....just for the heck of it. As in this excerpt from Poe's "Coliseum"
Here, where a hero fell, a column falls!
Here, where the mimic eagle glared in gold,
A midnight vigil holds the swarthy bat!
Here, where the dames of Rome their gilded hair
Waved to the wind, now wave the reed and thistle!
Here, where on golden throne the monarch lolled,
Glides, spectre-like, unto his marble home,
Lit by the wan light of the horned moon,
The swift and silent lizard of the stones!
…These stones—alas! These gray stones—are they all—
All of the famed, and the colossal left
By the corrosive Hours to Fate and me?