Friday, April 03, 2015

The Gate

This is another of my photos of the Farnworth Farm in Plumas County, California,
I am always there for just a short time and I always get something wonderful!
There is a whole implied narrative here: the structure, the gate, the tree, 
the intense lights and darks and the emu. I have been trying to imagine a book, 
of which this will be the image on the cover.

I have been reading today the translated short prose pieces by Spanish poet, Luis Cernuda. They are really quite wonderful and proceed evenly, each piece with a logic of its own. Cernuda is of the generation of Spanish poets that came of age around the time of the Spanish Civil War. He left Spain, never returned, and survived, unlike many of the others. I am thinking about writing short pieces that accompany images like the one above. Another task!

The Piano

     Next door to your house lived the family of that pianist, who was always away in distant lands, in cities around whose names you imagination place a magical halo, and who sometimes returned for a few weeks to his own country and family. Though it wasn't by seeing him come down the street, with his vaguely foreign and very artistic air, that you knew he was back, as night fell the piano told you.
     Along the hallways you went toward the room on the other side of whose wall he was practicing, and all alone there in the dark, deeply enchanted without knowing why, you listened to those languid phrases, so penetratingly melancholy, which called and spoke to your child's soul, evoking a past and future equally unknown.
     Years later you heard those same sounds again, recognizing them and attributing them now to that musician you so loved, yet the immensity, the expectation of a latent elemental force awaiting some supreme expression seemed still to go on existing in them beneath the fame of their author, a force which, given form, must break out into the light.
      A child pays attention not to names, but events, and in these to the power that drives them. What in the solitary shadows of a room drew you to the wall, and left you longing and nostalgic when the piano fell silent, was music itself, before and beyond whoever discovers and interprets it, like the springs of each rivers and even the sea are only the tangible and finite forms.

Luis Cernuda

Written in Water; the prose poems of Luis Cernuda,
translated by Stephen Kessler, City Lights Books, 2004, page 6.

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