Tuesday, 12 December 2017

But You're On The Left

"There's two I really like," he said between slurps of chestnut soup.

I struggled to hear above the cacophony swirling around me.

"Two?" I enquired.

"There's one on the right I rather like, and there's also one on the wall facing at the far end."

"Can you describe them," I asked?

He didn't answer. Perhaps my question was indiscernible? 

Or my art indescribable? 

"But you're on the left," I declared.

"Do you not like the one of you seated, wearing a flat cap?"

But by then he had moved onto something else. 

I never did discover which paintings he liked.

Sunday, 10 December 2017

The Light Though Far Grows Stronger

The Light, though far, grows stronger as Christmas approaches.

Today is AA's Birthday

Today is AA's Birthday.
He would be ninety-nine
Had the notes still played
In testament to the ryhme

Where only silence has a say
Instead of plinking sounds
Plinking-plonking every day 
In strides doing the rounds.

Now only the hushed place
Between each voiceless note;
Now only the fading face
Once imprinted by rote

Are silently heard inside
This weary, wistful head
That says he died;
But longs instead

To hear old AA 
On his birthday
Just play.

Friday, 8 December 2017

The Last Farewell

This photograph taken last July inspired my abstract expressionist painting The Last Farewell, which is not finished and, therefore, not ready to be exhibited, or indeed shown here (or anywhere else). I nonetheless feel compelled to talk about the work because of intelligence received three days ago.

I had already decided back in July to title the photograph The Last Farewell. I cannot explain why, but this is what came to me when I first viewed it. The subject matter is all that is found in the image. 

The figure walking and waving at the end of the paved path has been a friend of mine for almost half a century. He was due to visit tomorrow to attend a Christmas dinner party. Three days ago he telephoned to cancel owing to acute pains which prevented him sleeping, and obliged a visit to the doctor. We had all expected to see him on the 'morrow. Clearly the picture was aptly named, as it is now the last photograph I took of him. He already knew of its title, and the irony is not lost on him.

It translates to a large canvas well, and contains symbolism redolent to what we recognise to be significant. There are the three horizontal stripes of light produced by the sun in the west. Then there are the three verticals. Two of these are lamp posts. One is a telegraph pole. There are three people. Two visible in the image. The third is the photographer/artist, namely myself, who is creating the work. The digitally taken photograph (above) shows three verticals broken by some unseen energy.

Or entity.

The distant woman walks eastward. The man, my friend, walks southward, but will turn westward soon after this photograph was taken. His right foot is lifting to continue on the Right-hand Path.

The paved pathway with its double yellow lines provide three verticals starting to converge.

Three in one, as the lone figure swivels 180° for the last time before vanishing around the corner.

Yet before he does, he smiles and waves. The hand is high; the wave hearty. 

This is the last farewell.