What thoughts I have of you, Walt Whitman, for I walked down the sidestreets under the trees with a headache self-conscious looking at the full moon… Allen Ginsberg (1926 – 1997)
Some of the illustration boards that I cut up for my Popo Postcard Festival cards included the practice and palette boards for this painting I did a few years ago. Thus, I was inspired to dig it out of the IP archive! Don’t worry, the painting itself didn’t get the hatchet – it is one my few completed acrylic paintings that I still really like. The text of the original post from 2016 is below:
“This painting was one of two that I did for Matthias over at Beat Company (you can see the other one here edit Oct 13, 2020 – link broken and removed, sadly, Beat Company is no longer active) to mark the anniversary of Allen Ginsberg’s passing on April 5th, 1997. The inspiration for the piece was the footnote to Howl and a photograph of Ginsberg as a young man in Berkeley, California. When Matthias didn’t wind up using this painting for the anniversary post, I decided to post it here on Illustrated Poetry – but the more I looked at it, the more I realized it reminded me of the opening lines of A Supermarket in California. It is one of those cases where the art knows more than I do! You can read the entire text of A Supermarket in Californiahere. Painting, acrylic on illustration board, by me. Have a wonderful week!”
My recent “return” post about being in the desert brought this piece I did a few years ago to mind. I checked again today and didn’t find any additional information about Mr. Orr aside from a few references in contemporary books to the poem and nothing after 1920. A mystery he remains. The original text of my post is below.
“Don’t Worry, Spiders” was the very first haiku I posted on Illustrated Poetry! At the time, I paired it with a photograph I had taken of a brightly lit window at night – I thought of it like a Motel 6 for spiders. I decided to revisit the haiku and try it with something different: much more abstract and colorful (and perhaps from the spider’s perspective?) Haiku by Kobayashi Issa (1763 – 1828), painting (acrylic on illustration board), and composition by me. Have a great weekend! Enjoy!
Today’s poem, by Mona Van Duyn, is a wonderful example of ekphrastic poetry – poetry in response to another work of art. I responded with my illustration for the poem before I checked to see precisely which Goya painting Ms. Van Duyn was referring to – you can see a photograph of that painting here. I focused on the color and shape of Ms. Van Duyn’s poem – and I think the movement from Goya’s painting through Van Duyn’s poem to my small attempt resembles a game of telephone! But that may be one of the super-powers of ekphrastic art: it takes on a life of its own. Ms. Van Duyn was the Poet Laureate of the United States from 1992-1993. Painting (acrylic on illustration board) and composition by me. Enjoy!
This is an excerpt of a verse I wrote for the January challenge – “Vino y Sangre” – over at Red String Paper Cuts. It was to be in the form of a rock song, which was a new experience for me and a lot of fun. I wanted to do a collage to illustrate the poem, but several attempts floundered. This one finally came together after I mixed together some paint with Elmer’s glue and just started painting. Check out the whole rock song poem here! Poem and collage by me. Happy Friday!
I had just seen the movie The Imitation Game when I came across this poem about Alan Turing by m lewis redford; I was immediately captivated by it and wanted to do an illustration. The illustration wound up featuring the entire poem – so it’s technically not a excerpt (but I think that’s okay) – and incorporated a painting of mine rearranged with a discarded print of Frida Kahlo’s painting Diego and I. The format was loosely inspired by the surrealist technique of cubomania, where an image is cut up into squares and rearranged randomly. M lewis redford has a fantastic blog where you can read more of his poetry and observe all of the connections and themes he explores (which he calls “wormholes”) – check it out!