Saturday, May 18, 2019

Today Instead of a Poem


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It’s impossible to do photographic justice to Louis Sullivan’s 1897 Bayard-Condict Building on Bleecker Street head-on. I assert this not only on the basis of my own stumbling efforts to accomplish the feat but on seeing any of photographs of the building done by pro photographers which depict its face in full height. To take a full frontal shot of it requires backing down Crosby Street toward East Houston far enough away to get the measure of the whole long rectangular rise of it - a distance which all but cancels out the music of the tension between its voluptuous adornment and audacious verticality — what had been for its time perhaps the first tall building in the city so frankly to exult in being tall.
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But sometimes, in certain conditions of angle and light (such as were afforded by today’s golden evening), I’ll find I’ve managed to steal a shot of it which almost by accident suggests its elegant verticality and its exquisite carving as the wonderful marriage of bold height and constrained delicacy it is. If you’re lucky you can do a swift visual poem of it. But I don’t know who’s equal to the task of doing more. Sure ain’t me.
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But oh, Mr Sullivan! I don’t know when I’ve felt more grateful to an architect than I do to you for giving New York this wonderful gift.
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Friday, May 17, 2019

Miss Pan-o’-Plea


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You followed and swallowed
the panoply. Put infinitively,
both the ‘be’ and the ‘to’
of ‘to be’ comprise you.

Monday, May 13, 2019

Orchid-Owl, Avatar and Pal





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When it devolves upon one in one’s life
to choose not to resolve to revolve through the strife
of attempting by foot or by train or by car
to appear every day in far too many places, an avatar
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might then be wrought and/or bought to relieve
the impasse of your scrambling without a reprieve
to be clambering over it all, all at once.
Disingenuously putting up cheerful fronts
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can’t deliver the goods with aplomb.
Ergo, to deflect what was otherwise fated to bomb
on my rep, I construed to replace, cheek by jowl,
synthesized into duo, an orchid and owl
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less awkwardly than one might guess
one would likely be able to make coalesce
as effectively as they quite surely have done.
Sending this avatar out into Cosmos is fun.
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And at last the amassed ghastly onerous weight
0f imploring, in solo estate, with oneself as the bait,
to seduce every eye to regard one exactly
as what their desires require: a hot-wired acme –
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with Orchid-Owl running the race, All has lifted.
Existence miraculously now has shifted:
no longer inexorably deems I’ll fall sans a net
to placate the Omnivorous All. At least, not quite yet.
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