“And they call THAT art!”

Thoughts and Opinions

Yesterday a group of people were checking out the current art installation that we have here at the library: pieces inspired by the book Mink River. One of them is a mixed media piece that incorporates found items: cigarette butts. One of the group pointed out the piece to his friend and said, “Look at this! And they call THAT Art.” Everyone else in the group laughed along questioning the use of the cigarette butts. One person even pointed out that the cigarettes were found objects, but she said so in a way that was meant to make fun of the idea. At least that was the way the group took it. They all chuckled at this idea of using found objects in a piece of art, as if it was the worst idea ever.

I found this whole exchange amusing. That piece has evoked a response from everyone who has looked at it. It certainly evoked a response from this group of people. Isn’t that the purpose of art? It is for me. If I look at a painting, a photograph, a sculpture, read a poem, book, or short story,  and I am left thinking, “fuuuuck,” then that, to me, is art. I don’t care if it is pretty. It might be beautiful and it might be ugly. But it must be evocative. This cigarette piece most certainly is.

So yes, sir. That is what we call art.

The letter

Poetry

I originally posted the finished version of the poem I was working out in the photo above on Flickr. Then I lost my nerve and deleted it. And then I felt weak and stupid for losing my nerve. So I’m posting it here, for your entertainment and enjoyment (or judgment. whatever.).

A letter to my grandmother, found in her desk.

A Pantoum.

I’m getting along as well as can be expected.
It was such an awful shock to me.
Charlie went so sudden.
He had been feeling fine.


It was such an awful shock to me.
He went out that morning at 5:30 to sweep snow.
He had been feeling fine.
It was two above zero.


He went out that morning at 5:30 to sweep snow.
I didn’t even know he was out there.
It was two above zero.
When he came in the house I woke up and got dressed.


I didn’t know he was out there.
He said he was awful hungry. “I’ll fry myself 2 eggs.”
When he came in the house I woke up and got dressed.
Those are the last words he said.


He said he was awful hungry. “I’ll fry myself 2 eggs.”
He fell backwards in front of the kitchen stove.
Those are the last words he said.
Sweeping is harder on the heart than shoveling.


He fell backwards in front of the kitchen stove.
Bob from the mortuary said Charlie was gone before he hit the floor.
Sweeping is harder on the heart than shoveling.
His blood vessels in his eyes were ruptured.


Charlie was gone before he hit the floor.
He went so sudden.
Eye Vessels ruptured.
Just a few lines to let you know I’m getting along as well as can be expected.

Highlights

Random

Shipwreck found on the beach in Santa Cruz in 2005

I’ve been spending some time updating the photos on older blog posts and have been enjoying the walk down memory lane.

Some of these old posts document some really great quotes I’ve heard from random people over the years. Here are a few highlights:

“I died in Spring and was resurrected in Winter.” – guy on a bike at Santa Clara University.

“This is about me proposing to Chloe’s ashes at the memorial isn’t it?” – Heard on Days of Our Lives in April 2005

“But when I listen to music it is transmitted to the whole world.” – guy at public library listening station when told to turn down the Britney Spears. November 2005

“Hey, I think that’s the library lady..Is that the library lady? Yeah, it is! That’s the library lady, guys!” – kid at the bus station. December 2005.

Micheal Moore’s latest film, Fahrenheit 9/11, has been banned by Disney, it’s distributor. Unbelievable. Well, you know what? It just makes really, really want to go see it. It must be bloody fantastic if it has been banned by Disney.

Books, Music, Art, Movies