Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Kiki Smith and Mary Oliver

Last evening Vanessa mentioned how grim Grimme's tales can be. They're inspiring her to do collage/sculptures. The conversation went on and I didn't have a chance to tell her about the Kiki Smith painting above that is in the Brooklyn Musuem. It is not in the Sackler gallery but in a large space on the way there. I've found that in museums, as in the streets or elsewhere, there is much to see when you are on the way to where you plan to go. I'm not sure which tale, I think the blurb mentions "Alice"- definitely a little girl but she's watching or following a flock of birds ... but look closely, there's are wolves there too. One can look at this painting a long time. Kiki Smith is the younger sister of sculptor David Smith, she does all sorts of art, lately several "environments" were shown and I believe there were several wolves in that exhibit. Sometimes I am astonished at the amount of creativity we are apt to hurry past because we have some objective that seems more important than paying attention. That is how we fail to live large portions of our life.

As I keep saying, it is poetry month -- already a third elapsed. Spring is supposed to be coming, but temperatures are as chilly as they were large parts of the winter, 'tho the sun is very nice. I want to quote a little of a Mary Oliver poem because even the things that scare us -- I think most of us are somewhat afraid of snakes -- are worth paying attention to. I will quote only the first stanza, about a quarter of the poem, the title is SNAKE

And here is the serpent again,
dragging himself out from his nest of darkness,
his cave under the black rocks,
his winter-death.
He slides over the pine needles,
He loops around the bunchs of rising grass,
looking for the sun.

This is from "HOUSE OF LIGHT' published 1990 by Beacon. It is full of wonderful, observant, accepting nature poems.

No comments :