William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Art’

Copper Rain

More than halfway through, I’m not quite sure how I feel about George Schuyler’s satirical novel, Black No More. It’s certainly not without humor, and not without a large measure of truth. In the clever guise of science fiction, it is, in effect, a witty, sharply drawn editorial cartoon on American race relations. That I find the bitter edge of its caricature unappealing, says as much about me as it […]

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Canvas 468 — Not Without Laughter

Langston Hughes’ll cure your blues — give em to you too. Say you don’t want em?but you do — you do, like all the boys and girls. Greasy cold fish sandwich,box a crackerjacks — his trumpet and his banjo’ll cut you through and through. Twister blew his front porch then set it in a field — kingdom of a front porch,flat dab in that field. Blew his door off like […]

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Canvas 456 — As a Shepherd

Again I ask myself, what of these strange drawings? Many years ago, I said they were all self-portraits. But now I wonder. Doesn’t that imply a bit too strongly that I existed prior to them, and that I am the one who made them, rather than the other way around? What seemed true then, feels much less so now. Might it not be that my existence was, and is, born […]

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Cane

Now that I’ve finished it, I hope I am able to remember Jean Toomer’s novel, Cane. It has been this way for a great many years. The books I read have a way of passing through me. I retain impressions and moods, and lose most of the details. But the deep, dark poem that is Cane, the story of it, the play, is mood, is impression, is nightmare, stirring and […]

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Crossroads

With the rain, the mushrooms — bright-white at first, they soon become flared skirts and fans in an elfin dance; cursed, or worse — or blessed — quiet, composed — kissed — for some the world ends like this; others are smashed by tanks and NATO equipment. September 28, 2020 Crossroads#2 Pencil on Index CardJuly 2, 2010 . [ 884 ]

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In Memory of Laura Tedeschi

I read today of the passing of the artist Laura Tedeschi. She died April 4, 2018. I didn’t know. In 2010, Laura surprised me by painting my portrait. Quite by chance, after she’d shared it online, it arrived from Vienna on my birthday. On the back of the frame, Laura had written, “Lo Scrittore,” along with my name. The painting has been on display here in my library and work […]

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Dostoevsky and Van Gogh

Having fortunately lived long enough to finish reading all three volumes of Vincent’s letters, I have moved on to Dostoevsky’s Diary of a Writer, in Boris Brasol’s English translation, published in two volumes by Charles Scribner’s Sons in 1949. After years of being away from Dostoevsky’s great novels and stories, coming upon him in the somewhat more casual, conversational mode of his periodical writings is much like having coffee with […]

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