December 1st is my day to mount my first solo art show at the New Westminster library, main branch, in the upstairs gallery. 6th Avenue, between 6th & 8th Streets. (Not that I expect that I will ever have another art show…) Hope you can “show up”. They liked my “Santa Series”! The selection committee […]
December 1st is my day to mount my first solo art show at the New Westminster library, main branch, in the upstairs gallery. 6th Avenue, between 6th & 8th Streets. (Not that I expect that I will ever have another art show…) Hope you can “show up”.
They liked my “Santa Series”! The selection committee knew of my poetry and invited that as well. I just happen to have ekphrastic poetry, inspired by my own artwork.
In addition to the Mr & Mrs Santa portraits, I’ll have my “Two Dimensions”, inspired by the “Wait for Me, Daddy” photo. That, my first framed piece, was accepted for the inaugural Community Gallery show at the Anvil Centre opening in 2014. (The original has sold.) I’ll also present some framed originals from my “Mia Series” and some portraits of friends and family.
“Mia” – that may have been the name of our model in my only life drawing experience. I didn’t know that the initial two-minute poses were for “warm-up”, so I was done in two minutes. I am your occasional visual artist, preferring felt pen on cream card stock. On some few occasions, the muse has visited. (I wonder if she will ever visit again.)
My “Blue Santa”, BTW, has astonished me so far. Was informed that our city would like to purchase use of the image for their holiday card for the Parks & Recreation Department. The cheque is in the mail? You may see him & his friends in my gallery here at my blog. Thanks for visiting (& thank you to Mrs Claus who invited me to do their portrait).
Earlier this year I “confessed” at Beacon Unitarian that I had “submission-phobia”. People were astonished. Thanks to a little support from some Beacon members, I have been making more artistic submissions.
My poem on a Shakespeare theme, “Life as a Mortal Coil”, won second prize in the Burnaby Writers’ Society contest.
My contour drawing, “Mr & Mrs Santa #3” (in blue), was chosen by the City of New Westminster for its holiday card for Parks and Recreation use.
The “Santa Series” (six drawings) will be part of my first (& probably last) solo show at the NW library this December. Christmas art cards are $2 or 10 for $15. You may see these at Century House Artists’ Fair on December 3rd. The drawings are here in my Gallery.
I did say that I would finish the story about that horse in the photo in my last post. This giant Percheron (I’m 99% sure of the breed) is one of many that I have admired at the stables near Burnaby Lake. It was a rescue horse, not wanted because it was “the wrong colour”. The new owner had to get a custom-made saddle and bridle for her steed. She can be seen riding around the lake with a friend on a much smaller equine companion. I love this story. I think this is one of the biggest horses I have ever seen.
There are incredibly beautiful horses…
Story to follow…
Thank you to pals, Joe Dynahan Thompson and Michael Scales, for the photos used for my “ABOUT” page banner here. Thanks also to Laura Redmond, of RetroMetro Designs Inc., http://www.retrometrodesign.ca, who is helping me build this site…
Joe and I met on his birthday…I was happy to be able to provide this portrait…we and our mutual friend, S.E.N.M., had a lot of laughs that day in the Whole Foods cafe.
Michael and I are shown at the spring fund-raiser for Beacon Unitarian’s Syrian family, who arrived this summer. That’s where I purchased Laura’s excellent service in creating this website (blog-site?). We had so much fun at our table (with art) that we missed a whole round of the Trivia Contest!
My GALLERY banner has my most popular drawing…”Two Dimensions”.
In 2010 we spent 10 days in Berlin before going on to visit Jose’s family in Portugal. I’d been in Germany in early 1975. We both wanted to see Berlin, which I had missed then.
This poem won an Honourable Mention in the Royal City Literary Arts Society (a mouthful? i.e. RCLAS) contest earlier this year. It has just been published in the October issue of the RCLAS Ezine. So, here you are. I’ve been told that it refers to the Huguenots.
Now I see double-spacing here. Unless that will change back to single, we may miss the impact of the condensed stanzas having the shapes of the many memorial blocks.
I learned many years ago from a German friend, if you can’t type an umlaut, you add an “e” after the vowel. I love to say “Gewuertztraminer”. We have been making a fine one at the Wine Factory on Front St in New Westminster. “Cheeky Monkey” brand had great labels for this product, but they stopped making/providing those.
And now, my most recent recognition-winning poem…not true – most recent “otherwise-published”. My last award BTW was from the Burnaby Writers’ Society – second prize for my poem “The Mortal Coil of Life” – yes, the theme was “Shakespeare” – it’s 400 years, you know.
I’ll be reading that poem at the BWS Awards presentation ceremony at the Deer Lake Gallery, 6584 Deer Lake Ave (to left of Shadbolt Centre) – 7:30-9:30 on Tuesday, October 18. CRISTY WATSON won first prize – she read her poem at Poetic Justice this fall & honoured Shakespeare so well – I “had a feeling” – was not surprised by her win.
BERLINER SUITE, A SHAPED POEM
the Jewish Memorial is plain, grey, rectangular—
low-lying structures of dull, dark cement (coffin-like)
repeat in different sizes spread over acres
two thousand, seven hundred, eleven pieces
I’ve not come to celebrate war
won’t go to concentration camps
never again—I know enough—
I’m a pacifist, on a Berlin bus
I remember Martin Niemoeller’s words—when they came for
the communists, socialists, trade unionists, the Jews
he said: I did not speak up, and when they came for me
there was no one left to speak
I’ll look for memorials for the others—
gypsies, Roma people; gays and lesbians
the differently-abled and incurably-ill
Catholics, and Lutherans like Niemoeller
the tour guide reports—at one time
when Protestants were persecuted in France
they were safe in Berlin—
every fifth Berliner was French…
the painting in our hotel room shows a ship
carrying the city’s towers—
all the spires, old and new, are included—
it’s a clear day, an even keel, calm water
but my early morning stanzas come
as coffins, long dark shapes in the night…
Europe Germany Berlin religion war memorial
sub’d RCLAS contest 2016; won Honourable Mention
published in the RCLAS Ezine, Wordplay at Work, October 2016
This morning I woke up with “North by Northwest”. As I turned on the radio at about 7:30 (?) I heard a fine interview about ginkgo trees…thought I must have that word in a poem… I was thinking of a romantic story about a high school friend, but that one hasn’t appeared in a poem (yet).
After learning the correct spelling of “ginkgo”, I found I have that word in two versions of what I call a “dual list poem” – after a poem by Elee Kraljii Gardiner. (I’ve also confirmed how to spell her name. She with the beautiful new book of poems, “Serpentine Loop” – about skating.)
My poem lists terms from both dental hygiene and poetry…my life’s major works. I’d forgotten the term, “ginkgo walk” – but there it was…
garland of sonnets gauze
gingival, gingivitis gingko (walk)
glissando, glosa, glossary glossitis
grammar, punctuation and spelling (GPS) groove
Oh good, the italics (for poetry terms) survive here, and the line breaks… Where I posted it on North by Northwest’s Facebook page, it cam through in just a (funny?) paragraph form.
What about George Elliott Clarke? I’d better get back to my presentation about him, for delivery at the New Westminster main library this Tuesday at 6:30. “In Their Words” is organized by Alan Girling, and includes four genres. I wrote an essay about him for Introduction to Poetry at Douglas College in 2011. I presented this also at World Poetry at the library in Black History Month (2014?). Since 2011 Mr Clarke has been Poet Laureate of Toronto, and he is now Canada’s seventh Parliamentary Poet Laureate. He has also earned his eighth honourary doctorate. I’m happy to see the smile on his face (in photographs) these days.
BTW (by the way) the last post before this one has my poem which was written on September 17, 2001 – fifteen years ago yesterday – poem three in my “9/11 Trilogy”. “One Week After”. The first poem was written “Ten Years Before” – the title then was “A Valentine for the Western World”. It appears on the previous post, on the same day. It was also the first thing I heard on the radio one morning. My feelings had to be expressed in a poem. For me, it explained 911. Poem Two has not been published, so I won’t share it here.
G is also for “Good Morning”. Good Morning, Afternoon, or Evening – as the case may be.
POEM THREE—ONE WEEK AFTER
Broadway and Macdonald, September 17, 2001
you note the gold coin at my throat
I finger it and say, the person’s head
is the Statue of Liberty
it must be, it’s American
very appropriate for these times
you answer; I continue
the head is the back of the coin, I like it better
the front has eagles on it
maybe they represent something evil…
embarrassed for my possible faux pas
I mumble on
how can eagles be evil?
(is it politically incorrect to speak of politics
at this time? is that what I’m learning?)
how are you really? we ask, knowing
the answers would be different otherwise…
here at the Sunshine Diner, almost one week after—
you’re gone, the rock music goes quiet;
amid images of Elvis, Marilyn Monroe, Jimmy Dean
this is the right place for my memorial—
the poems that would not come, could not;
my hand over paper
chases mauve and lime-coloured shadows—
the eerie, surreal effects of the diner’s neon lights
and the spirits
Franci Louann firstname.lastname@example.org September 17, 2001
Peace war coping terrorism
Published on Facebook September 11, 2013 & 2015
POEM ONE—A VALENTINE FOR THE WESTERN WORLD
Amriya Shelter, Baghdad, Iraq
I awake to hear the news
of one hundred blackened bodies in Baghdad
all the women of a neighbourhood
in a bomb shelter with their children
attacked at night
by our allied forces
one hundred blackened bodies
one man has lost eleven
this is February 13th
today is Ash Wednesday
on the Christian calendar
most of our leaders are Christian?
tomorrow is Valentine’s Day
most of our leaders are lovers?
one hundred blackened bodies
women and children
one man has lost eleven
On February 14, 2001 Agence France Presse published Iraq Wants U.S. Tried for War Crimes, stating: a total of 407 people were killed, including 269 women in the Amriya shelter in Baghdad, on February 13, 1991. This shelter, one of thirty-four in Baghdad, has been kept untouched as a memorial.
Franci Louann email@example.com February 13, 1991 after hearing the CBC news
Published at www.poetsagainstthewar.org in early 2003 & on Facebook
Keywords: peace war regret loss memorial military
Uptown Unplugged had its largest crowd so far on the Royal City plaza at 6th & 6th, from noon to 2 today. I told ‘some of you’ about Emma Toth…words may fail me here, but stay with me, please..
Five years ago, when Emma was nine, Eileen Kernaghan directed her parents to me as a tutor for writing. Most of our time together, we tried to finish Emma’s short stories. Sometimes we talked about poetry. Emma & her family (all delightful) came to Poetic Justice, where Emma presented her poems on open mic.
Over the years, I saw them now & then at various local open mics. This summer I made it down to the Old Crow on Front St for their very popular open mic, which has been held on third or fourth Thursdays. Fourteen-year-old Emma surprised me as she presented two songs that she had written herself, accompanying herself on guitar!
Her maturity astonished me.
Shortly after that I made sure that they knew about Songwriters Open Mic, first Tuesdays in the Heritage Grill Back Room. I’m not a regular, but knowing they planned to go, I went & got us a corner table. Emma’s name was late on the schedule…usually performers do two songs…Emma was indecisive. “New Rule”- those under fifteen could do three songs if they wanted to. To use a cliche, Emma brought the house down. Mom Jody (Jodie?) introduced me as Emma’s ‘poetry tutor’ (or was it ‘mentor’?). My jaw dropped even further. Emma had written thirty songs already.
I was told of Emma’s two-hour gig at Uptown Unplugged today. Front row seat for me, please… The host & setup man, Randy, said it was the largest crowd. I was pleased that Eileen & Pat Kernaghan could join us. Emma’s dad, Paul, said after that he hoped I’d heard myself in Emma’s work. I said, no. NO. I’m more in awe than anyone and so thrilled that this (adorable) talented family remembers me this way.
Big happy face here.