Friday, September 19, 2014

Life is Art for Chicago Artist Erick Roho Garcia


He has painted everyone from Edgar Allan Poe, Bob Marley, Frida Kahlo and Derrick Rose in bright colors on canvases larger than the lives his subjects have led. He is Erick Roho Garcia and this talented Chicago artist lives by the credo that "life is art."

Roho's art has been turning up in galleries and street corners throughout the city drawing on cultural influences that stretch from Mexico to the South Side. A Diego Rivera for the 21st century, we recently put Roho behind the proverbial eight-ball and had him answer eight questions as to what motivates his art...and his life — since they are one-and-the-same to him.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Library Walk: William Carlos Williams

Happy Birthday William Carlos Williams! Born September 17, 1883.

The William Carlos Williams poem, Poem is one of the few poems on Library Walk that is cast in its entirety. Available in The Collected Poems of William Carlos Williams: 1939-1962, Williams compares the life-cycle of a rose to the life-cycle of man and the importance of poetry in capturing those moments thereby rendering them immortal.

He does all that in 27 words!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Chapbook — Poem For My Brother


In the Fall, oak leaves blew as we
in the courtyard of the Art Institute.
It was afternoon now,
and my brother drew in charcoal.

In the morning we had flittered in the galleries,
and lighted on a van Gogh,
and pecked Vincent’s chairs of straw.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Empty Plate


I could tell you
that I'm fine;
that my smiles have meaning
and I live life with meaning
as well,
but I'd be lying if I told you
that that were
true.

Friday, September 12, 2014

On The Road in Missouri: The Stranger Within Our Gates


We wanted to clear St. Louis having left Chicago too late in the day to make it straight through to Texas. Driving down the I-44 our eyes were peeled in the diminishing light for a roadside sign that would point us to a cheap sleep. Well, we found that sign and our budget lodging in Nowhere, Missouri but what we weren't expecting was another sign.

This sign was framed and hung on the back of our motel room door in St. Clair, Missouri. Was it a sign from God?

Thursday, September 11, 2014

W.H. Auden's 9-11 Poem...Written in 1939


As we  remember the horrific events of September 11, 2001 we remember a poem. In the aftermath of 9/11 people turned to poetry to express their anger, their grief, their disbelief at the madness of it all. One of the poems that people turned to in those uncertain times was a poem written by W. H. Auden. The poem was written in September...1939.

The poem, September 1, 1939, marks the onset of World War II and first appeared in The New Republic the following month and in book form in Auden's 1940 collection of poems, Another Time. The poem echoes the W.B. Yeats poem from another war, Easter, 1916 that brings to life the Easter Rising in Dublin, Ireland. Auden's poem earned the poet acclaim, especially for the line, "We must love one another or die."

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

First Lines Second Thoughts — Ian Fleming's Goldfinger



First Lines Second Thoughts is a look at the first lines of well known literary works. On second thought, do these opening words stand alone as poetry? Today, in honor of National Bourbon Heritage Month we look at literature's most famous spy. James Bond.

What? You thought Bond only drank vodka martinis. Not in Ian Fleming's seventh Bond book — Goldfinger. Published in 1959.

Monday, September 8, 2014

She Ain't Like the Rest


The heavens open
and allow me to view
inside the dream,
the dream that can only be seen
by staring through the gateways
encasing the soul of a queen.