Poetry

By WR Jones

vanessa

    I always felt poetry, to be blunt, sucked.  I want to be told clearly and concisely what the author is trying to convey.

    I recently engaged in a conversation with a woman who mentioned she wrote poetry.  After haranguing her about my painting I felt it was polite and rather big of me to inquire about her poems.  Reluctantly she sent me a few.  I was surprised at my reaction to them.  I liked them all.   She granted me permission to use the following poem in this post:

Morning blues

 

In early morning,

the mountains appear

rough, like uncut gems,

amethyst-blue,

propped up against a platinum sky.

 

I run now, while it is quiet.

Under the dark-blue canopy,

a scrub jay flutters in the bushes and

coyotes prance wily on the trails.

I contemplate the blues of phlox and morning glories,

the grey-blue of stones and pavement,

the silver of first shadows cast by the rising sun.

 

I get lost in thoughts of colour and

wonder how it is that I have not noticed before;

heavy and light, muted and sparkling,

hushed and strident.

In this hour, under cover of shade and dawn,

the rainbow seems unnecessary.

 

Nancy-Jean Pément

November 2008

    It reads like “painterly” words that have been brushed onto the paper.   This piece made me concious of the fact that writers like painters must learn observation, to really “see” the world around them.  Then they interpret the world through ink instead of paint.  I have a romantic image of Nancy setting at a desk in a long white dress with a high neck.  Her hair is up circa 1901, and she is dipping her pen into the ink bottle, writing in a beautiful flowing script then blotting with a well worn blotter passed down to her from her father.

    Sometimes I’m as full of shit as the Christmas goose.  Still, isn’t this a marvelous poem?

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30 Responses to Poetry

  1. gypsy-heart says:

    I agree it is a marvelous poem..as is your painting!!

    The image you have of Nancy is quite fitting and a complement to her. :)

    Thank you for sharing your painting and thank you to Nancy for sharing her “painterly words”

    Ps My comment was not about my site..it was because I commented on your Green My Ass post and you did not answer me (scroll up and you’ll see me there). This is getting confusing…I think we are showing our age. :O I think you were all in to the “tagging” mode, and all the ladies commenting. eh, eh

  2. I must agree on both counts!! …….
    (Sometimes I’m as full of shit as the Christmas goose. Still, isn’t this a marvelous poem?)

    I love your painting also…

  3. Barbara Pask says:

    Love your painting and the poem. It feels like it might have been written by someone that writes and paints, very lovely.

  4. Thanks so much for the comment on my blog. I must confess that I’m a turncoat as I’ve started up a blogspot blog and am enjoying it so much more. It just works better for me. I find your painting so very beautiful and charming. Enjoyed the poem also.

  5. jalapfaff says:

    Really nice painting and lovely poem to go with it too. My compliments to you on the painting. Will you pass on my compliments to the poem-writer? I write poetry too but don’t worry, Bill, I’m not going to subject you to any…at least not right now, since I can see you’re still recovering from the shock of your mind expanding. :)

  6. I enjoyed the poem too, Bill. Thank you for sharing it, and thanks also to Nancy-Jean for giving you permission to post it. It made me smile, as did your painting.

  7. Lori says:

    I agree, its a wonderful poem. Beautiful poems make me want to paint what they describe. I like your painting too, its lovely and soft. I love your vision of Nancy, I would like seeing more of her poetry.

  8. bonnieluria says:

    Bill- aha, the tender side emerges. Those previous rant posts have purged the darkness out of you and left us with this beautiful painting, really.

    Nancy’s poem is a painting of words in penstrokes.

    These two creatively reflect each other.

    I’m so taken with the girls expression and how you worked the blue dress and the blue background without losing either one.
    I really like this piece a lot Bill.

  9. Sally Chupick says:

    Hi Wayne. gorgeous painting, and the poem fits it very well. Thanks for posting it, i’m glad i came by for a visit. NIce to see your blog.

  10. Well, so much for eating goose this Christmas…but I do love the colors in your painting as well as those in the poem..

  11. kevmoore says:

    Lovely poem. I can’t help wondering though,Bill – the little girl in the painting – I feel you are just out of shot to the right, having stolen her Hershey bar.

  12. Dar says:

    Bill, you’re getting in touch with your feminine side. I picture you in a long dress with a high collar…
    I really like the painting. She has sweet little hands.

  13. wrjones says:

    Gypsy-heart – Thanks. Can’t imagine how I would miss you. I may have been drinking; NEVER happen again.

    Thanks, Marion.

    Barbara – Thanks; she should be a painter – maybe someday. Then she can suffer in two mediums.

    Janelle – I left a comment on your blog? Those are scary words. Lord knows what I may have said. Maybe it was Lisa. Anyway we are very glad you stopped by even if I lied to get you here. Did I promise you any money?

    Jala – I would be happy to use a poem of yours. If I post a painting you think it would go with please let me know. I will add it to the post. If I like it I may erase your name from the bottom and insert mine. If it really stinks, we will put Lisa’s name on it.

    Diana – thanks. Nancy didn’t exactly share it, I had to pay her. There is a fine line between professional and crook. I think her toe edged across that line.

    Lori – paint it! I think the title of the painting should be Nancy’s Poem.

    Bonnie – Thank you. Your comments always mean so much to me.

    Sally – One of the first rules of commenting is to get the name right. I’m Bill and the other one is Lisa. You can call her Wayne if you like. Glad to have you come by, but next time go a little lighter on the cactus juice so you don’t bump your head on the keyboard again.

    Paula – that is an excellent observation on eating goose for Christmas. Think I lost my appetite as well. I like the way you worded “colors in your painting as well as those in the poem”.

    Kev – You should be on CSI – how on earth? That is spooky. I only stole that Hershey to draw some genuine emotion from the girl. Worked wonders. This look is what we who are constantly working with models refer to as “the Piss eye”.

    Dar – by God – if I catch you looking in my bedroom window one more time, I’m going to invite you in. I really look quite stunning in that dress. And at my age it looks like I put it on fresh in 1901 and left it on.

  14. carolking says:

    I, like you, mostly don’t get poetry. But this was a beautiful poem only surpassed by your beautiful painting. Really. I am not being sarcastic!

    I like her expression and her hands and the way she looks a tad bit skeptical, as if you just told her that you would give her that hersey bar back in a moment as soon as you finish the painting.

    I wrote a poem once. A while back the NYC Transit Authority had ads on the subway that said there would be a contest and that people should send in original poems. I wrote this and sent it in:

    ODE TO THE EMPIRE STATE BUILDING
    by Carol King

    Your stature is your glory
    I’m in awe of your bright lights
    I’d visit the observation deck
    but I’m afraid of heights.

    I’m still waiting to hear back from them.

  15. wrjones says:

    Carol – or should I call you WB Yeats. I expect the acceptance of your poem is in the mail. Best start work on the acceptance speech. I expect her look is caused by her father making her pose over and over. Poor girl must have had a miserable day.

  16. kevmoore says:

    Here’s one:

    She went out in the woods today
    The weather was quite kind
    The place was full of grizzlys but she didn’t seem to mind
    And as she walked along the path she slowly came to find, she had a bear in front of her…
    and a little bear behind.

  17. kimiam says:

    Beautiful painting and poem!

  18. wrjones says:

    Kev – be very careful. That is the kind of poetry that makes the ladies swoon. One of them is liable to fall and hurt her head.

    Kimiam – thanks. I’m so sorry you don’t have the facility with words of a Kev, but a heartfelt comment is doggone near as good.

  19. Wonderful painting and a beautiful poem – thanks for both.

  20. Bill, I don’t get most poetry either. But some poems (like Walt Whitman’s) I really like. In any case, I love the expression you captured on this girl’s face. Holly

  21. Nava says:

    I am stunned. So you are a romantic after all, Bill?

    Yes, it is a wonderful poem (I just miss some oranges to complement all that blue), and a very cool painting to go with it.

    One thing confused me, though. You say “Sometimes I’m as full of shit as the Christmas goose”.
    Maybe it’s my English, but I don’t quite get the word “Sometimes” in that sentence…

  22. kevmoore says:

    This seems like an appropriate moment to suggest a song – “Walter Whitman , where are you?” by Gino Vannelli. I don’t know if there are many songs about poets, but this a great one.
    Nava – I think Bill is using the word ‘sometimes” as a gesture towards self-improvement.

  23. 100swallows says:

    Nice painting, Bill. I’m glad you found a poem you like. They aren’t all as high-falutin’ as that old “To be or not to be”. Remember how you loved “Casey at the Bat” and “Roses are red, violets are blue” (one of my old favorites).

  24. wrjones says:

    Thanks, Minneapolis, Jesus I bet it is cold there today.

    Cara – that’s what I want to hear. Simple straight forward praise. You are a Godsend.

    Holly – Thanks. I’m mostly too lazy to try to understand poetry, but I do like this piece.

    Nava – ya, that word Sometimes, made a lot of people blink and scratch their heads. “Oh, look, Maude, Bill is trying to gloss over one of his ever-so-slight faults.”

    Kev – I’m going to recommend Nancy listen to that song.

    100swallows – Thanks. I’m entering a new period of personal growth and sophistication. From now on when I go into a liquor store I’m not buying any wine less than $4.00 (i.e. that would be two bottles of 2 buck chuck).

  25. Dianne Mize says:

    So what she proved is that real poetry doesn’t suck at all. What sucks are the psudo, slurpy attempts to fake an emotion–in verse form.
    I like this poem a lot. And I like your painting.

  26. You are always full of shit!…and written so well as only WR can do it!

  27. wrjones says:

    Dianne – thanks. I think I like your comment better than David’s however correct he may be.

    David – very astute observation – however, it really is obvious to the most casual observer.

  28. Dawn says:

    Yes, I think writing is a lost ART. I recently received a Thank you note from a friend for flowers I sent. The note was so beautifully written I read it over and over and thought I had never read a letter that sounded like poetry. It was brave, classy, creative and open and flowed like music to my ears.

    The painting of the child is beautiful and I like the study of the nose and mouth. Always good paintings from you.
    Hope your holiday was a good one!

  29. wrjones says:

    Thanks, Dawn. Your comment is well written. A good example of literacy that, of course, won’t be followed here.

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