(Jeremy Denk plays Bach’s ‘Goldberg Variations’ via NPR First Listen . I shall not try to decipher for I do not know music.)
I know nothing, really, about anything which brings us round to my original thought for this evening’s post:
is it still okay to blog when I am an authority on nothing?
Is it okay for me to expound on the latest piece of art spied at the local gallery via a weaving of words in rumination and prose/poetry? Is that just word vomit, as one of my classmates opined today in the forum? May I write about Emily Dickinson – share thoughts on #___ or #____ – imagining the possibilities from her small hands? Should I cast away everything, even the creative voice that whispers via lines of poetry, because of no MFA?
YHC is just a place to express thoughts, but many of my classmates feel this should only be done by the professionally educated, not anyone with a keyboard and connection. I may create misinformation….what do you think?
(changing brews – a quick note about drowning)
In no time the black river yoked all my strength
I saw the lesser waters great and the soft banks steep and high.
The above are the first two lines (7 lines in total) from Egon Schieles’s poem, “Music While Drowning”. Two days ago, I didn’t know who Egon Schiele was until Mark Kerstetter shared “Portrait of Wally”. Since then there has been a snowball effect – Schiele has suddenly taken over my world with sweet serendipity.
You see, at the used book shop yesterday, I found, “Egon Schiele’s Portraits” by Alessandra Comini. It was a bit more than I usually like to spend, but it was so well reviewed on the back, and a National Book Award finalist in 1974, the copy called to me. Before leaving, still searching for art books, I visited the $2.00 area. Without much thought, a thin volume of German Expressionism poetry caught my eye. I bought it for the woodcuts, not realizing in 24 hours it would mean so much more.
After reading the first chapter of Comini’s book on Schiele, I decided to read a bit of poetry. As I skimmed the table of contents for a place to start, I found three poems by Schiele listed. Ironically, I had just written in the margins of Comini’s book a thought on portrait and writing: could a poet compose a self-portrait? Schiele, it seems, questioned the same thing:
I am everything at once, but never will I do everything at once. – “Self Portrait 1″ Egon Schiele
There are actually two self-portrait poems by Schiele, the above and “Self Portrait 2″, but I do not like to fringe on copyright, so shall not post no. 2 – it is rather long.
Schiele, from what I can discern after the first chapter, helped to change portraiture. Gustave Klimt paved the way for this new expression of portrait, and Schiele took it to another level with his technique and content. Schiele was in part, a product of his time, as German Expressionism had started to appear in painting, as well as music, dance, and literature. It had become vogue to reflect in one’s art – exploring the depths of the inner psyche. (tbc)
*A brief note on Egon Schiele (1890-1918) – he was an Austrian painter – part of the Viennese Expressionism movement. Hence, it was not expected to find him included in the German Expressionism poetry book.
I am inspired to fit Schiele into my course readings, as well as visit something I used to enjoy despite the lack of talent. You’ve been forewarned, self-portrait attempts may be posted in the future. I guess this really is a blog that should be avoided, especially if you fear drowning ~