• Wisdom
  • Real + Imagined

    And then the kicker is this: in passing from the real to the imagined, in following that trail, you learn that both sides have a little of the other in each, that there are elements of the imagined inside your experience of the “real” world – rock, bone, wood, ice – and elements of the […]

  • Poetry
  • The Spangles of Self to Burn

    Big Song I have tried it. The brag, with permission of democracy. The royal we. The big words, like courage, excellence and power, brilliance. Have tried to supercede the bound- aries of skin, hair, scarred hands, the fatigue housed by the majority of my bones, to launch a spirit large as a whole group of […]

  • Aesthetics
  • Tracey, Say It Isn’t So

    Tracy Emin at the White Cube Gallery (Oli Scarff/Getty Images) Tracey Emin has cordoned off sex and sexuality as a major trope of her oeuvre. She has been outrageous, flagrant, outspoken and nakedly raw in her expression of pure id-ness. So turning 50 changes all that? Come on Tracey, can’t you love ideas AND sex? […]

  • Science
  • The Three-Body Problem

    A wise friend, something of a mystic and a channeler, recently described to me an encounter she had with a non-sentient being who passed through her consciousness some time earlier. In the midst of this mystical encounter with an energy that can only be described as “other” and yet not, she heard a voice in […]

  • Wisdom
  • That Damned Underbelly

    Portrait of Francis Bacon I have posted two separate reviews on Slow Painting of the Francis Bacon show at the Metropolitan Museum in New York, one by Jerry Saltz of New York Magazine, and one by Sebastian Smee of the Boston Globe. Both touch on Bacon’s deeply troubled personal life, in particular his experience of […]

  • Art
  • Face Against the Glass

    Arombell 1, 14 x 14″, mixed media on wood panel I’m heading into the final lap of this preparatory marathon. Postcards for my upcoming show go out this week, so my face is against the glass. (If you would like to be on my mailing list, send me an email with your snail mail address.) […]

  • Poetry
  • Retreat to the Roots

    Things Shouldn’t Be So Hard A life should leave deep tracks: ruts where she went out and back to get the mail or move the hose around the yard; where she used to stand before the sink, a worn-out place; beneath her hand the china knobs rubbed down to white pastilles; the switch she used […]

  • Creativity
  • Learning from Master Flaubert

    Gustave Flaubert Thanks to top notch blogger Judith H. Dobrzynski (Real Clear Arts) for finding a fascinating article about Flaubert in Prospect Magazine. I needed this, especially today. To read about how arduously Flaubert reworked Madame Bovary (and one would assume, everything he produced) helped eliminate some of the stress and discomfort with a very […]

  • Poetry
  • The Hope of Skin

    Study for Skin I, by Jasper Johns Two Countries Skin remembers how long the years grow when skin is not touched, a gray tunnel of singleness, feather lost from the tail of a bird, swirling onto a step, swept away by someone who never saw it was a feather. Skin ate, walked, slept by itself, […]

  • literature
  • Tales from the Fairies

    Add fairytales to the list of things that may not be as old as you may have assumed. The argument made below claims that the origins of this material is more accurately traced to the print tradition than the oral one. Understandably this thesis has been controversial. Folklorists, ethnologists and mythologists have strong opinions about […]