Presentation on theme: "To draw a poem: black or white? Key poetic reference: Kenneth Koch in Rose, Where Did You Get That Red? Teaching Great Poetry to Children Compiled by PEK."— Presentation transcript:
To draw a poem: black or white? Key poetic reference: Kenneth Koch in Rose, Where Did You Get That Red? Teaching Great Poetry to Children Compiled by PEK August 2009
ROBERT MOTHERWELL Motherwell's path to becoming an abstract artist was through philosophy, art history, and poetry. He studied at Stanford, Harvard, and then Columbia, where he was introduced to émigré Surrealists (including Matta) by art historian Meyer Schapiro. His particular genesis as an abstractionist has its basis in Mallarmé, whose dictum "To paint, not the thing, but the effect it provides" was pivotal. Another pivotal moment came in 1937 in San Francisco, where he heard André Malraux speak at a rally on the Spanish Civil War. There, Motherwell found a great moral issue that would drive his work for years. In his words, it was the realization "that the world could, after all, regress." His Elegies to the Spanish Republic have been a vehicle to express what Motherwell has called "a funeral song for something one cared about" in abstract, visual terms. The series, which was sparked by a small drawing Motherwell made in 1948 to accompany a poem by Harold Rosenberg, evolved into an ongoing, years- long exploration of the theme in more than 150 monumental canvases. These abstract meditations on life and death share a common structure in compositional form. The horizontal white canvas is divided by two or three vertical black bars or bands. Those are punctuated at various intervals by ovoid shapesstark blots of black. The whole is a dialogue of formal opposites straight, curved, black, whiteexecuted in a painterly, brushy manner in which the act of creation is evident. For Motherwell, as for so many other Abstract Expressionists, this is a search for universal content that stems from form itself: in his words, "…the Elegies use an essential component of pictorial language that is as basic as the polyphonic rhythms of Medieval or African or Oriental music. -
The duality in Motherwells work is hypnotic. In his travels to Mexico and Spain, he was struck by both cultures simultaneous obsession with death and extreme passion for life. After a 1958 trip to Spain, Motherwell made a number of works, giving them Spanish titles. Iberia No. 18a mere six-by- eight-inch workfeels immense. Black spreads across the canvas until only a bit of white is left uneaten, its edges dissolved in what is called flying white in Sumi brushwork. Robert Motherwell From the Collection: THE MODERN ART MUSEUM OF FORT WORTH - Catherine Walworth - Robert Motherwell, Iberia #18, 1958 Oil on linen mounted on a paperboard support 5 1/8 x 7 1/8 inches Iberia, Oil on canvas, 70 3/8 x 89 3/16 inches (178.8 x cm). Guggenheim Bilbao Museoa GBM
ROBERT MOTHERWELL: THREE POEMS BY OCTAVIO PAZ 4 November 2008 – 15 February 2009 The exhibition presents 34 pages of partly illustrated texts from a portfolio of three poems by the Mexican poet, essayist and Nobel prizewinner Octavio Paz. Motherwell and Paz were close friends, dedicating works to each other, and the present collaboration arose from a visit by Motherwell to Mexico in 1967, a country in which he had already spent time in The folio was published in The present edition comprises texts in Spanish and English printed in two colours on Arches paper on which 27 lithographs were subsequently printed at Trestle Editions in New York, four of them in colour. On display is one of the three hors commerce sets from the edition. Octavio Paz had published the three poems – San Ildefonso Nocturne, Return and Skin/Sound of the World – for the first time in 1976 on his return to Mexico after having spent most of his life from 1943 onwards in Europe, India and the United States. The last of the three poems was written in 1971, inspired by his contemplation of the work of Motherwell.
AGNES MARTIN Her work was influenced greatly by nature, however not in the sense of replicating nature - rather, she wanted the viewer to experience the same feelings they have when in front of nature. Some of her titles allude to nature - to leaves, rivers, flowers, etc., but her work has more to do with expressing positive inner states of existence. She has been associated with the Minimalist movement, but her work is less rigid, less cerebral - more spiritual in inspiration than Minimalist. She shared with her friend, the artist Richard Tuttle, certain attitudes about art and life, which stem from their interest in eastern philosophy - the ideas of ego-lessness, humility, and the Tao - in life and in art. In the catalogue, reproduced at for an exhibition of Martin's and Richard Tuttle's work at the Modern Art Museum of Forth Worth, there is a great quote from Martin about how to look at her work. She recommended doing the same as when we look at the ocean: "You just go there and sit and look.www.mamfw.org She said that she began a work by developing a mental image of it - and had a clear image of the composition before she started; then she concentrated on the scale and proportions. (Many of her paintings adhere to a roughly 6-feet by 6-feet format.) She used a very limited number of elements, and with these she created an image that seems to be woven, rather than painted. The economy of elements, however, is not used systematically, as the Minimalists did. There is an organic sense of shifting and growth to her work, of changing rhythms. These are delicate, gentle, poetic paintings, meant for quietness and subtlety, which rely on no ideology - whether feminist, minimalist, or other. When talking about life and her work, she spoke of beauty, mystery, love, innocence, happiness, exultation and the idea of perfection in our minds - which exists only in our minds. She said she gave up figurative painting because of its limitations in expressing her vision, which could be expressed only in non-objective form. To her, the straight horizontal line is the essence of the plains of New Mexico - the vast spaces. She said that she did not choose the grid as a format - that it chose her, when she was thinking about innocence; the image of the grid came to her mind, so she painted it. To her, the grid represents wholeness, boundlessness, quiet and ego-lessness - an expression without words. -http://www.ndoylefineart.com/martin.htmlhttp://www.ndoylefineart.com/martin.html Canada/USA ( )
"It's really about the feeling of beauty and freedom, that you experience in landscape.... My response to nature is really a response to beauty."
"People are not aware of their abstract emotions, which are a big part of their lives, except when they listen to music or look at art."
Agnes Martin from Writings I can see humility Delicate and white It is satisfying Just by itself… And Trust Absolute trust a gift A precious gift I would rather think of humility than anything else.
Agnes Martin from Writings Humility, the beautiful daughter She cannot do either right or wrong She does not do anything All of her ways are empty Infinitely light and delicate She treads an even path. Sweet, smiling, uninterrupted, free.
FRANZ KLINE Kline's best known abstract expressionist paintings are in black and white. Kline re- introduced color into his paintings around 1955, though he used color more consistently after Kline's paintings are deceptively subtle. While generally his paintings have a dynamic, spontaneous and dramatic impact, Kline often closely referred to his compositional drawings. Kline carefully rendered many of his most complex pictures from studies. There seems to be references to Japanese calligraphy in Kline's black and white paintings, although he always denied that connection. Bridges, tunnels, buildings, engines, railroads and other architectural and industrial icons are often suggested as imagery informing Kline's work.Japanese calligraphy Kline's most recognizable method/style derives from a suggestion made to him by his friend Willem De Kooning. In 1948, de Kooning suggested to an artistically frustrated Kline to bring in a sketch and project it with a Bell Opticon opaque projector he had at his studio. Kline described the projection as such: Willem De Kooning "A four by five inch black drawing of a rocking chair...loomed in gigantic black strokes which eradicated any image, the strokes expanding as entities in themselves, unrelated to any entity but that of their own existence." Kline created paintings in the style of what he saw that day throughout his life. -wikipedia USA ( )
SENGAI The works of the Rinzai Zen master Gibbon Sengai ( ) are among the most renowned of all Japanese art. Sengais art was his Zen teaching, giving expression to the ineffable with energy, humour, and breathtaking simplicity. To behold it is to encounter that teaching – as fresh for us today as it was for Sengais students two hundred years ago. Sengai may not have been professionally trained in the technique of ink drawing or painting, but his natural endowments as an artist of life and human nature were rich; the imagination we see in his work testifies to it. His humour overflows in his drawings, but they betray no ill temper; they are not at all ironic or sarcastic, but filled with a compassionate heart and good will for all humanity and non-sentient beings alike. – DT Suzuki From Sengai, the Zen of ink and paper by DT Suzuki Japan
Mount Fuji Looking up, the heavens are seen extending; Looking down, the earth is seen stretched, Both to the farthest ends of the horizon! Beyond, there shines a white pearl, The only one, and no second!
The Universe The circle-triangle-square is Sengais picture of the universe. The circle represents the infinite, and the infinite is at the basis of all beings. But the infinite in itself is formless. We humans endowed with senses and intellect demand tangible forms. Hence a triangle. The triangle is the beginning of all forms. Out of it comes the square. A square is the triangle doubled. This doubling process goes on infinitely and we have the multitudinosity of things, which the Chinese philosopher calls the ten thousand things, that is, the universe. The trouble with us linguistically-minded beings is that we take language realistically and forget that language is of no significance whatsoever without time. In truth, language is time and time is language. – DT Suzuki
FRANK OHARA O'Hara's poetry is generally autobiographical, much of it based on observations on what is happening to him in the moment. Donald Allen says in his introduction to The Collected Poems of Frank OHara, That Frank OHara tended to think of his poems as a record of his life is apparent in much of his work.  O'Hara discusses this aspect of his poetry in a statement for Donald Allen's New American Poetry: What is happening to me, allowing for lies and exaggerations which I try to avoid, goes into my poems. I dont think my experiences are clarified or made beautiful for myself or anyone else, they are just there in whatever form I can find them. He goes on to say, "My formal 'stance' is found at the crossroads where what I know and can't get meets what is left of that I know and can bear without hatred." He then says, "It may be that poetry makes life's nebulous events tangible to me and restores their detail; or conversely that poetry brings forth the intangible quality of incidents which are all too concrete and circumstantial. Or each on specific occasions, or both all the time."  New American Poetry  Among his friends, O'Hara was known to treat poetry dismissively, as something to be done only in the moment. John Ashbery claims he witnessed O'Hara Dashing the poems off at odd moments – in his office at the Museum of Modern Art, in the street at lunchtime or even in a room full of people – he would then put them away in drawers and cartons and half forget them.   -wikipedia North America,
Frank OHara A True Account of Talking to the Sun at Fire Island The Sun woke me this morning loud and clear, saying Hey! Ive been Trying to wake you up for fifteen minutes. Dont be so rude, you are only the second poet Ive ever chosen to speak to personally so why arent you more attentive? If I could burn you through the window I would to wake you up. I cant hang around here all day.
Frank OHara A True Account of Talking to the Sun at Fire Island Sorry, Sun, I stayed up late last night talking to Hal. When I woke up Mayakovsky he was a lot more prompt the Sun said petulantly. Most people are up already waiting to see if Im going to put in an appearance. I tried to apologize I missed you yesterday. Thats better he said. I didnt know youd come out. You may be wondering why Ive come so close? Yes I said beginning to feel hot wondering if maybe he wasnt burning me anyway.
Frank OHara A True Account of Talking to the Sun at Fire Island Frankly I wanted to tell you I like your poetry. I see a lot on my rounds and youre okay. You may not be the greatest thing on earth, but youre different. Now, Ive heard some say youre crazy, they being excessively calm themselves to my mind, and other crazy poets think that youre a boring reactionary. Not me. Just keep on like I do and pay no attention. Youll find that people always will complain about the atmosphere, either too hot or too cold too bright or too dark, days too short or too long. If you dont appear at all one day they think youre lazy or dead. Just keep right on, I like it.
Frank OHara A True Account of Talking to the Sun at Fire Island And dont worry about your lineage poetic or natural. The Sun shines on the jungle, you know, on the tundra the sea, the ghetto. Wherever you were I knew it and saw you moving. I was waiting for you to get to work. And now that you are making your own days, so to speak, even if no one reads you but me you wont be depressed. Not everyone can look up, even at me. It hurts their eyes. Oh Sun, Im so grateful to you!
Frank OHara A True Account of Talking to the Sun at Fire Island Thanks and remember Im watching. Its Easier for me to speak to you out Here. I dont have to slide down Between buildings to get your ear. I know you love Manhattan, but You ought to look up more often. And Always embrace things, people earth Sky stars, as I do, freely and with The appropriate sense of space. That Is your inclination, known in the heavens And you should follow it to hell, if Necessary, which I doubt. Maybe well Speak again in Africa, of which I too Am specially fond. Go back to sleep now Frank, and I may leave a tiny poem In that brain of yours as my farewell.
Frank OHara A True Account of Talking to the Sun at Fire Island Sun, dont go! I was awake at last. No, go I must, theyre calling me. Who are they? Rising he said Some day youll know. Theyre calling to you too. Darkly he rose, and then I slept.
Frank OHara A True Account of Talking to the Sun at Fire Island Sun, dont go! I was awake at last. No, go I must, theyre calling me. Who are they? Rising he said Some day youll know. Theyre calling to you too. Darkly he rose, and then I slept.
PABLO NERUDA Pablo Neruda (July 12, 1904 – September 23, 1973) was the pen name and, later, legal name of the Chilean writer and politician Neftalí Ricardo Reyes Basoalto. Neruda assumed his pen name as a teenager, partly because it was in vogue, partly to hide his poetry from his father, a rigid man who wanted his son to have a "practical" occupation. Neruda's pen name was derived from Czech writer and poet Jan Neruda; Pablo is thought to be from Paul Verlaine. With his works translated into many languages, Pablo Neruda is considered one of the greatest and most influential poets of the 20th century. ChileanCzechJan Neruda Paul Verlaine Neruda was accomplished in a variety of styles ranging from erotically charged love poems like his collection Twenty Poems of Love and a Song of Despair, surrealist poems, historical epics, and overtly political manifestos. In 1971 Neruda won the Nobel Prize for Literature, a controversial award because of his political activism. Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez once called him "the greatest poet of the 20th century in any language." Twenty Poems of Love and a Song of Despairsurrealist Nobel Prize for LiteratureactivismColombian Gabriel García Márquez  - wikipedia Latin America
Pablo Neruda Poetry And it was at the age…Poetry arrived in search of me. I dont know, I dont know where it came from, from winter or a river. I dont know how or when, no, they were not voices, they were not words, nor silence, but from a street I was summoned, from the branches of night, abruptly from the others, among violent fires or returning alone, there I was without a face and it touched me.
Pablo Neruda Poetry I did not know what to say, my mouth had no way with names, my eyes were blind, and something started in my soul.
Pablo Neruda Poetry Fever or forgotten wings, and I made my own way, deciphering that fire, and I wrote the first faint line, faint, without substance, pure nonsense, pure wisdom of someone who knows nothing, and suddenly I saw the heavens unfastened and open, planets, palpitating plantations, shadow perforated, riddled with arrows, fire and flowers, the winding night, the universe.
Pablo Neruda Poetry And I, infinitesimal being, drunk with the great starry void, likeness, image of mystery, felt myself a pure part of the abyss, I wheeled with the stars, my heart broke loose on the wind.
JOHN ASHBERY John Ashbery (born July 28, 1927) is an American poet.  He has won nearly every major American award for poetry and is recognized as one of America's most important, though still controversial, poets. In an article on Elizabeth Bishop in his Selected Prose, he characterizes himself as having been described as "a harebrained, homegrown surrealist whose poetry defies even the rules and logic of Surrealism."poet Elizabeth BishopSurrealism "No figure looms so large in American poetry over the past 50 years as John Ashbery", Langdon Hammer, chairman of the English Department at Yale University, wrote in "[N]o American poet has had a larger, more diverse vocabulary, not Whitman, not Pound".  Stephen Burt, a poet and Harvard professor of English has compared Ashbery to T. S. Eliot, the "last figure whom half the English-language poets alive thought a great model, and the other half thought incomprehensible". Yale University WhitmanPound HarvardT. S. Eliot  North America,
This poem has a strange form: it is a sestina, and all its lines end with the same six words. The six words here are buildings, portrait, prayer, subject, brush, and canvas. Sestinas can use all kinds of end-words. A sestina can tell a story, as The Painter does, or it can be about different places or wishes or dreams or anything else. The traditional order of the end-words is , , , , , In each of the three final lines there are two end-words, and the order is 12/34/56. From Rose, Where Did You Get That Red? By Kenneth Koch
John Ashbery The Painter Sitting between the sea and the buildings He enjoyed painting the seas portrait. But just as children imagine a prayer Is merely silence, he expected his subject To rush up the sand, and, seizing a brush, Plaster its own portrait on the canvas. So there was never any paint on his canvas Until the people who lived in the buildings Put him to work: Try using the brush As a means to an end. Select, for a portrait, Something less angry and large, and more subject To a painters moods, or, perhaps, to a prayer.
John Ashbery The Painter How could he explain to them his prayer That nature, not art, might usurp the canvas? He chose his wife for a new subject, Making her vast, like ruined buildings, As if, forgetting itself, the portrait Had expressed itself without a brush. Slightly encouraged, he dipped his brush In the sea, murmuring a heartfelt prayer: My soul, when I paint this next portrait Let it be you who wrecks the canvas. The news spread like wildfire through the buildings: He had gone back to the sea for his subject.
John Ashbery The Painter Imagine a painter crucified by his subject! Too exhausted even to lift his brush, He provoked some artists leaning from the buildings To malicious mirth: We havent a prayer Now, of putting ourselves on canvas, Or getting the sea to sit for a portrait! Others declared it a self-portrait. Finally all indications of a subject Began to fade, leaving the canvas Perfectly white. He put down the brush. At once a howl, that was also a prayer, Arose from the overcrowded buildings.
John Ashbery The Painter They tossed him, the portrait, from the tallest of the buildings; And the sea devoured the canvas and the brush As though his subject had decided to remain a prayer.
HAN-SHAN "Han Shan and Shih-te are two inseparable characters in the history of Zen Buddhism, forming one of the most favourite subjects of Sumiye painting by Zen artists. Han Shan was a poet-recluse of the T'ang dynasty. His features looked worn out, and his body was covered in clothes all in tatters. He wore a head gear made of birch-bark and his feet carried a pair of sabots too large for them. He frequently visited the Kuo-ch'ing monastery at T'ien-tai, where he was fed with whatever remnants there were from the monk's table. He would walk quietly up and down through the corridors, occasionally talking aloud to himself or to the air. When he was driven out, he would clap his hands and laughing loudly would leave the monastery." - D. T. Suzuki, Essays in Zen Buddhism, Third Series, 1953, p th – 9 th centuries AD
Han-Shan from Cold Mountain 6 Men ask the way to Cold Mountain Cold Mountain: theres no through trail. In summer, ice doesnt melt The rising sun blurs in swirling fog. How did I make it? My hearts not the same as yours. If your heart was like mine Youd get it and be right here.
Han-Shan translated by Gary Snyder from Cold Mountain 7 I settled at Cold Mountain long ago, Already it seems like years and years. Freely drifting, I prowl the woods and streams And linger watching things themselves. Men dont get this far into the mountains, White clouds gather and billow. Thin grass does for a mattress, The blue sky makes a good quilt. Happy with a stone underhead Let heaven and earth go about their changes.
Han-Shan translated by Gary Snyder from Cold Mountain 8 Clambering up the Cold Mountain path, The Cold Mountain trail goes on and on: The long gorge choked with scree and boulders, The wide creek, the mist-blurred grass. The moss is slippery, though theres been no rain The pine sings, but theres no wind. Who can leap the worlds ties And sit with me among the white clouds?
VICTOR HUGO Victor-Marie Hugo (French pronunciation: [viktɔʁ maʁi yˈɡo]) (26 February 1802 – 22 May 1885) was a French poet, playwright, novelist, essayist, visual artist, statesman, human rights activist and exponent of the Romantic movement in France.[viktɔʁ maʁi yˈɡo] Frenchpoetplaywrightnovelistessayistvisual artiststatesmanhuman rightsactivistRomantic movement In France, Hugo's literary fame rests not only upon his novels, but also upon his poetic and dramatic achievements. Among many volumes of poetry, Les Contemplations and La Légende des siècles stand particularly high in critical esteem, and Hugo is sometimes identified as the greatest French poet. Outside France, his best-known works are the novels Les Misérables and Notre-Dame de Paris (known in English also as The Hunchback of Notre Dame).Les ContemplationsLa Légende des siècles Les MisérablesNotre-Dame de Paris Though a committed conservative royalist in his youth, Hugo grew liberal as the decades passed; he became a passionate supporter of republicanism, and his work touches upon most of the political and social issues and artistic trends of his time. He is buried in the Panthéon.republicanismPanthéon -wikipedia Pre-exile France, Post- exile Europe (1802 – 1885)
Victor Hugo Tomorrow, at the point of dawn, at the hour when the countryside grows white Tomorrow, at the point of dawn, at the hour when the countryside grows white, I shall depart. You see, I know you are expecting me. I shall go through the forest, I shall go over the mountain. I cannot remain far from you any longer. I shall walk with my eyes fixed upon my thoughts, Seeing nothing outside, hearing no noise, Alone, unknown, my back stooped, my hands crossed, Sad, and the day will be like night for me. I shall not look at the gold of evening falling, Nor at the sails in the distance going down toward Harfleur, And when I arrive, I shall place on your tomb A bouquet of green holly and flowering briar.
MICHAEL ONDAATJE Michael Ondaatje was born in Sri Lanka (then Ceylon) and moved to England with his mother in After relocating to Canada in 1962, Ondaatje became a Canadian citizen.Sri LankaCeylonEngland His style of fiction, introduced in Coming Through Slaughter (1976) and mastered in The English Patient (1992), is non-linear. He creates a narrative by exploring many interconnected snapshots in minute detail.Coming Through Slaughter Although he is best known as a novelist, Ondaatje's work has also encompassed autobiography, poetry and film. A semi- fictional memoir of his Sri Lankan childhood is called Running in the Family (1982). He has published thirteen books of poetry, and won the Governor General's Award for two of them, namely The Collected Works of Billy the Kid (1970) and There's a Trick With a Knife I'm Learning to Do: Poems (1979).Running in the FamilyGovernor General's Award - wikipedia Sri Lanka/Canada
Michael Ondaatje from Wells, in Handwriting ii The last Sinhala word I lost was vatura The word for water. Forest water. The water in a kiss. The tears I gave to my ayah Rosalin on leaving the first home of my life. More water for her than any other that fled my eyes again this year, remembering her, a lost almost-mother in those years of thirsty love. No photograph of her, no meeting since the age of eleven, not even knowledge of her grave. Who abandoned who, I wonder now.
HAIKU Haiku (, haikai verse ? ) listen (help·info), plural haiku, is a form of Japanese poetry, consisting of 17 moras (or on), in three metrical phrases of 5, 7, and 5 moras respectively.  Haiku typically contain a kigo, or seasonal reference, and a kireji or verbal caesura. In Japanese, haiku are traditionally printed in a single vertical line, while haiku in English usually appear in three lines, to parallel the three metrical phrases of Japanese haiku.  Previously called hokku, haiku was given its current name by the Japanese writer Masaoka Shiki at the end of the 19th century. ?listenhelpinfoJapanese poetrymorason kigokireji caesurahaiku in English hokkuMasaoka Shiki -wikipedia Japan ( )
In Japanese haiku a kireji, or cutting word, typically appears at the end of one of the verse's three metrical phrases. While difficult to precisely define its function, a kireji lends the verse structural support,  effectively allowing it to stand as an independent poem. Depending on which cutting word is chosen, and its position within the verse, it may briefly cut the stream of thought, suggesting a parallel between the preceding and following phrases, or it may provide a dignified ending, concluding the verse with a heightened sense of closure. kireji   In English, since kireji has no direct equivalent, poets sometimes use punctuation such as a dash or ellipse, or an implied break, to divide a haiku into two grammatical and imagistic parts. The purpose is to create a juxtaposition, prompting the reader to reflect on the relationship between the two parts. A haiku traditionally contains a kigo, a defined word or phrase which symbolizes or implies the season alluded to in the poem.kigo Among traditionalist Japanese haiku writers, kireji and kigo are considered requirements; yet, as noted above, kireji are not used in English. Kigo are not always included by modern writers of Japanese "free-form" haiku and some non- Japanese haiku. In contrast to English verse which is typically characterized by meter, Japanese verse counts sound units (moras), known as "on". The word on is often translated as "syllable", but there are subtle differences between an "on" and an English-language "syllable". Traditional haiku consist of 17 on, in three metrical phrases of 5, 7, and 5 on respectively.metermorason The word onji ( ; "sound symbol") is sometimes used in referring to Japanese sound units in English  although this word is archaic and no longer current in Japanese.  In Japanese, the on corresponds very closely to the kana character count (closely enough that moji (or "character symbol") is also sometimes used  as the count unit).  kana  One on is counted for a short syllable, an additional one for an elongated vowel, diphthong, or doubled consonant, and one for an "n" at the end of a syllable. Thus, the word "haibun", though counted as two syllables in English, is counted as four on in Japanese (ha-i-bu-n).diphthong Most writers of literary haiku in English use about ten to fourteen syllables, with no formal pattern.haiku in English -wikipedia
Basho ( ) translated by R.H. Blyth The old pond; A frog jumps in – the sound of the water.
Basho ( ) translated by R.H. Blyth With what voice, And what song would you sing, spider, In this autumn breeze?
Shiki ( ) translated by Harry Behn What a wonderful day! No one in the village doing anything.
Issa ( ) translated by Kenneth Rexroth Wild goose, wild goose, At what age Did you make your first journey?
HOTTENTOT TRIBE The language of the Hottentots is monosyllabic; having four known dialects the Namaqua, which is still spoken by some of the natives; the Kora and Cape Hottentot, which are practically extinct; and the Eastern Hottentot, which exists only in a few meagre vocabularies, and has been extinct for some time. The most striking characteristic of the Hottentot language for the European lies in the "clicks". Something similar is thought to be found in the Galla language of Abyssinia, in the Circassian tongue, and in the ancient speech of Guatemala. But three-fourths of the words in the Hottentot dialects begin with a click. Clicks are of four kinds, and are difficult to describe to those who have not heard them. The drawing of a cork, and the gurgling sound of water in the narrow neck of a bottle, the sound made in urging a horse to trot or run, and other sounds have been used to illustrate their nature; but at least one of them, the palatal click, defies description. The grammatical system of the Hottentots is built almost exclusively on sex-denoting suffixes, and it is the most complete of this small group of languages. The liquid L is entirely wanting, and it has a small variety of clear nasal consonants. The only native literature that exists in these dialects consists of folk-lore tales, such as mark the beginning of all European literature. - https://www.iamshaman.com/dagga/hottentots.htm Africa
Hottentot tribe Song for the Sun That Disappeared behind the Rainclouds The fire darkens, the wood turns black. The flame extinguishes, misfortune upon us. God sets out in search of the sun. The rainbow sparkles in his hand, the bow of the divine hunter. He has heard the lamentations of his children. He walks along the milky way, he collects the stars. With quick arms he piles them into a basket piles them up with quick arms like a woman who collects lizards and piles them into her pot, piles them until the pot overflows with lizards until the basket overflows with light.
MESCALERO APACHE TRIBE Mescalero (or Mescalero Apache) is a Native American tribe of Southern Athabaskan heritage currently living on the Mescalero Apache Indian Reservation in southcentral New Mexico. The Mescaleros opened their doors to other Apache bands, the Chiricahua who were imprisoned at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and the Lipan Apaches. The Reorganization Act of 1936 consolidated the tribes onto the reservation.Native American Southern AthabaskanNew MexicoApacheChiricahuaFort Sill OklahomaLipan Apaches -wikipedia Native America
Issa ( ) translated by Kenneth Rexroth Many Native American tribes have songs and poems such as this to go with special occassions. Such songs are often partly magic, sing in order to help make things happen. The song which describes the beautiful dawn may help to make sure that the dawn will come again and again. The songs are full of praise and boasting – the idea behind this is that if you say how good and strong and beautiful something is, it will help it to be that way. Its like wishing, but instead of saying you wish something were true you say it is true – instead of saying I wish I could win the bicycle race, you say My bicycle is faster than all the other bicycles in the world and wins every race. - From Rose, Where Did You Get That Red? By Kenneth Koch
Mescalero Apache; adapted from P.E. Goddard Dawn Song (from the Gotal Ceremony) The black turkey in the east spreads his tail The tips of his beautiful tail are the white dawn Boys are sent running to us from the dawn They wear yellow shoes of sunbeams They dance on streams of sunbeams Girls are sent dancing to us from the rainbow They wear shirts of yellow They dance above us the dawn maidens The sides of the mountains turn to green The tops of the mountains turn to yellow And now above us on the beautiful mountains it is dawn.