Thursday, November 15, 2007

The World Is Made of Conversations

Last fall Oakley wrote a poem called "Expressions." It spoke of the way we're all connected, how a kind of narrative thread runs through all of the world--our bodies, our spirits, the places we inhabit, the people we meet on the street, the bench we sit on in the park, the ducks on the pond we watch from that bench, the pond. I know I'm mixing up several of his poems--he has written so many memorable ones, and he is all of 18!

Here are a few passages from the poem:

The world is made of conversations;
Slips of the tongue birth children,
The inflection of the word
Crashing, calling into the other,
The idea becoming the leaf
That falls into a puddle
And changes into a skeleton,
A statement upon the world...

In the darkness
Voices instinctively fill with light
And begin to share themselves with one another;
It is customary to reach out with inflection
And feel the bodies ambling through
The corridors of the earth;
The schools,
The cathedrals filling up with prayer,
The hospitals withholding laughter,
The graveyards settling the dead,
The streets that never accommodate silence...

The world is made of conversations.
A person becomes the world
The various afflictions,
The wars that shatter children,
The moments of love that violate
The chemistry of the heart,
The suicide of summer into autumn,
And speaks about it in order to create another.

"The world is made of conversations." The way he said that moved me. It told the truth in a new way. It inspired the collage above, in whose wrinkled surface I embedded that sentence. The painting sold, happily, the very day it hung in the gallery, to a physician/author.

Now that I'm part of the blogosphere, those words have still more meaning to me. I count myself lucky to have found this world, where the conversations never end. Where a single thread of thought can wrap itself around the world, become entangled with other threads, and return the next day, enlarged, sparkling.

If you've made it this far, kindly proceed to "Inside the Pyramid." I seem to be in a blogging frenzy today.


david mcmahon said...

He's a teenager? How good wil he be as he matures ... that's amazing

San said...

Yup, he won a statewide poetry contest when he was 15 and his fingers have been riveted to the keyboard ever since.

Lee said...

Exquisite painting, San! If you ever have a showing I hope that is the painting you use to make the advertising posters for it. No wonder it sold on the first day of showing. I'd have bought it myself.

I see views through windows into different lives. Some are rich with experiences, happy, and beautiful (the blue room, the green music room). And as in life, some are not so happy (the upper left room which makes me think of violence for some reason). I'm particularly fond of the blue room. :)

And an exquisite poem by Flan! If all of his poems are that good he should have a book of them out. It's obvious from the images he paints that he observes life and thinks carefully about what he sees. I hope you'll publish more of his poems.

Hope! & Joy!

murat11 said...

Lovely poem/painting tandem: wonderful transformations: "slips of the tongue birth children" ( that gets better and rounder and richer every time you repeat it); "the various afflictions"; "the suicide of summer." Wonderful collisions in the painting: the tandem put me in mind of Cy Twombly, Jacob Lawrence, and William Carlos Williams, all scumbled up into a rich (Oakley/San)Merideth impasto.

Shrink Wrapped Scream said...

Like the butterfly effect, but with words, yes? This boy has been powdered with your talent-dust, what a present you've unwrapped to the world!

And the painting, a waterfall of voice weaving in, through and over each other, all joined together in the endless song of life.. wonderful.

HMBT said...

Wonderful post and an amazing poem. Such insight for so few years alive on this planet, this reality. A wise person indeed.
Love both suprize that this one sold so fast. That's the magic of art in a were in a powerful state of loving and magic creation. Thank you for sharing!

QUASAR9 said...

Hi San,
love the paintings
The world is made of conversations 'words' & 'colours'

San said...

Lee, your view of windows into various lives is a poetic perspective in itself. That upper left room feels violent to me too. A little blood and guts spices it up, don't you think?
: )

I'm sure that from time to time, I'll be putting up some of the Oakster's poetry. He does have some newer ones that are pretty exciting.

Thank you!

San said...


I too love that line "Slips of the tongue birth children." "Better and rounder and richer"--well put, my man. Your comments are rich impastos--layered with meaning, like an offer that simply cannot be refused, or a pesto thick with nuance.

Thanks, kingpin.

San said...

"A waterfall of voice weaving in, through and over each other, all joined together in the endless song of life."--Ms. Scream, that sounds like a description of your own contribution to our blog world.

Thank you for your lovely observations.

San said...

Heather, thank you for that "magic of art in a nutshell" comment. Yes, love does come in to play.

Have a magically creative day!

San said...

Mister Quasar,

Thanks for stopping by. So glad you enjoy the paintings!

Happy cosmic trails...

lklight said...

Hi San, hope to see you at the recycled show this weekend, I have a wonderful story to tell you about the sale of "Wendy"!
Sorry I haven't been in touch more...well, I'm sick of whining about how overwhelmed I've been, so I won't say it!
I've been looking at your blog, & your paintings are just beautiful, can't wait to see them all live!

San said...

Hey, Leighanna--I've been feeling overwhelmed too, mostly with good stuff though. Hope to make the recycled show. I am curious with regard to Wendy...

Thank you for the compliment!

Flannery said...

I loved that piece.

Celebration of Life said...

A very lovely painting, San! It reminds me of ruins of another place and time, a legacy. I wonder what my life painting will be, if my conversations and actions will be remembered and what my legacy will be?

San said...


You are always the encourager. Love you. xoxoxo

Meanie the baby dragon said...

Hi San!
Me mawmaw took mee foh uh wok duhday an wee gotz yotz ov picktowz tu bwog wen we dit hom! Me yike dat payntun! U aw vewee dood!

WBTT said...

"In the darkness
Voices instinctively fill with light
And begin to share themselves with one another"

It's all about the sharing San, isn't it? Our son is perspicacious--like you. How sweet it is to be a receiver of your art, your writing, and the poetry of Oakley C. Merideth. I'm also looking forward to the magic that will occur in the kitchen next week. Feeling like a lucky man.

It's great to see you becoming excited again about writing. Love you Tiny.

Anonymous said...

Late arriving today. I thought of blogging immediately upon seeing the piece. Separate, yet connecting.

San said...

Jolene, your notion of a "life painting," a "legacy," speaks to me. It's both fun and scary to wonder how we'll be remembered one of these days. : )

San said...

Chuck, I kint wate to tee doz picktoz.

En I am toe gwad, toe vehwy, vehwy gwad, dat u ike da payntun. Danks.

San said...

WBTT, yes we are lucky, aren't we? I too am looking forward to being with the family and preparing the feast with Flan. The grocery cart was so heavy, I could hardly push it.

I LOVE you.

San said...

Chewy, how cool that you thought of blogging too. "Separate yet connecting." That says it.

Sandra Evertson said...

Divine! Simply Divine!
Sandra Evertson

San said...

Sandra, thanks for stopping by!

indicaspecies said...

Congratulations San - for the exquisite collage, Oakley's brilliant poetry, for the instant sale, and for every bit of this superb post.

San said...

Thanks, Celine!