Why I am not a painter

March 16, 2008

Why I Am Not a Painter  I am not a painter, I am a poet. Why? I think I would rather be a painter, but I am not. Well,  for instance, Mike Goldberg is starting a painting. I drop in. “Sit down and have a drink” he says. I drink; we drink. I look up. “You have SARDINES in it.” “Yes, it needed something there.” “Oh.” I go and the days go by and I drop in again. The painting is going on, and I go, and the days go by. I drop in. The painting is finished. “Where’s SARDINES?” All that’s left is just letters, “It was too much,” Mike says.  But me? One day I am thinking of a color: orange. I write a line about orange. Pretty soon it is a whole page of words, not lines. Then another page. There should be so much more, not of orange, of words, of how terrible orange is and life. Days go by. It is even in prose, I am a real poet. My poem is finished and I haven’t mentioned orange yet. It’s twelve poems, I call it ORANGES. And one day in a gallery

I see Mike’s painting, called SARDINES.

I really enjoyed reading works by Frank O’Hara, more than i have of any other poet in a while. his style of writing is so different, and so personal towards the reader. The title of this poem really grabbed me, because i know that i am in no way a painter or a poet, so doing these blogs sometimes is not something i can do very easily. It was interesting to see how both him and Mike Goldberg wrote/drew about something that wasn’t included in the final product, but became the title of it anyway. It’s things like that that made me think about the poems i’ve read, and paintings i’ve seen, and looked back and thought hm.. what did i just read? the meaning to them is found deeper than just looking at it. it’s like what we talked about in class, you have to look at how something means, not literally what it means.

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