The following reviews to be read like poems
Again we find ourselves back at the mystical urge—to explore, to create movement, to go faster and faster, and maybe find some kind of peace at the heart of it, a state of pure being
(Enter M. Scorsese)
Two pieces—like a diptych—about the transformative power of writing
Cinema as the go-between,
The urgent mediator,
The graceful, resourceful messenger
Both film-poems interrogate
The link between words and painting,
The link between images and painting
Only Lovers Left Alive was, in a way, a tribute to T. S. Eliot’s The Waste Land.
Jim Jarmusch returns to the world of poets and poetry with Paterson
A companion piece—a twin?
Pablo Larrain’s Neruda.
Not a biopic but, rather, another poem.
or the art of lighting up matches
When the filmic screen becomes a white page on which to deliver words to the eye and the ear
Collision of worlds on the street/collision of signs on the page
Encounters at the bar/with the rap artist /with the drug dealers /with people on the bus
Every encounter with a human being
Like a white page to be filled and “uttered”
The world is a stage
But not necessarily a tale told by an idiot
Yet not always full of sound and fury
(Enter W. Shakespeare)
What’s in a name? What’s in a place?
Iconic references to dreams and twin hood
Poetry as a way to reach dreams/create dreams?
To establish twin hood between words?
To find twins?
The delivery of words
The delivery of life
Doubling effect (s)
Man and woman
The same and different in their artistic longing and search
quest and query
Both have noticed how the inscription on the matchbox looks like a megaphone
Both have the ability to see and make us see
Blend of colors: black and white
And other pairs
Colorful twins/Twins of color(s)
To transmute ordinariness and repetition into beauty and chance
Human time (the time of the watches, the clocks, the bus schedule, which have to be obeyed)
The blank dial with little wheels clicking and clicking behind it
(Enter W. Faulkner)
And inner (poetic) time: the “other dimension”
The daily schedule structuring the filmic poem into stanza of repetition and surprise
Into a routine that never quite falls into the groove
The watch…the mausoleum of all hope and desire
(Enter W. Faulkner)
Water/falling and Waterfalls: poetry either unites in unexpected ways
(like the box of matches in a love poem)
Or splits apart
(waterfalls becomes water falls)
Defying the arbitrariness and stilted rhythm of our prosaic lives and associations.
(Enter P. Ricoeur)
Opposing the pine stem of the match and its hard top ready to burst into flames
Is a poem like a match ready to send flames to the world/to set the world on fire?
Electrical failure/human emotional failure
Vulnerability of human achievements and artifacts:
Materiality of the notebook, the tragic flaw?
How we break down or fall apart : the lovers (Romeo and Juliette), the dramatic persona, the fake props
Hurry up, please, it’s time
(Enter T.S. Eliot)
The poet ill equipped to cope with the lies of the real world?
To overcome loss
To change the course of your life
Inner and outer
Suddenly—there’s God—so quickly
(Enter T. Williams)
A Japanese poet recognizes a fellow poet
From beyond the barrier of language
From beyond the border of geography
From beyond the boundary of propriety
From beyond the frontier of longing
The gift: blank sheets of paper
Sometimes a white page will trigger something
Usher new beginnings out of ends left behind
The everyday and the now as an opportunity to erase and redo.
Now as emblematized in Laura’s daily reinventing of herself and her surroundings
Painting: applying another layer
Cover up or palimpsest?
Encounter of words on the screen
Encounter of realities through the unavoidable eye of the camera
(close-ups, shot and counter shot, editing, sound effect, light effect)
Random encounters on the bus, people telling about other encounters
Daily encounter with a colleague who also has stories to tell
Encounters with two-ness
Pairs of twins
Twins we have
Twins we create
Fellow poets in the present
(A girl, a man) (How many more to come)
Fellow poets in the past
(William Carlos Williams, Allan Ginsberg) (How many more to conjure up)
The Poet as WITNESS
Incongruity of the Smartphone
“I don’t want one, I don’t want to be on a leash”
Incongruity of the image of the poet talking on the phone
Using the “code” words
“I have a situation”
The dog—on the leash
Offers a cautionary tale:
He eats the notebook out of jealousy and ignorance/He can be sold and bought
Or the art of playing (poetic) chess
When you read poetry in translation, it’s like taking a shower with a raincoat…
(Enter Neruda on screen)
Neruda the politician
Neruda the poet
The World of Reality and the World of Fiction
A special blend called Magic Realism
The complexity of the narrative and the narration
The characters caught in stand-offs
Performing on screen the visual quality of poetry
Sequences like tableaux vivants—or musical fugues.
With suggestive photographic intrusions
Swift and relentless editing
Ability of the poet to inspire
To spark our ability to transcend reality through the imagination
To stir the political and creative artist in each of us
Waking the “poet” sleeping in our daily-ness
In the most unlikely places and times
The World of Art (literature and painting and music and life itself)
And/Against/Despite The World of Politics (arrests, prisons, interrogations)
the police (officer) and the writer
Pursuit of a dream: to become someone, to inhabit one’s name.
To be a primary character, no longer just an extra
The Chase as a skillfully orchestrated ballet, like two shadows playing on a wall
The Dance of the Happy Shades
(Enter A. Munro)
Now you see me, now you don’t
Leaving clues behind
Pawns on a chessboard
Waiting for the right player(s)
Power of the words as they are recited, remembered, exchanged
Power of the words as they become coded calls to rebel
(Enter P. Neruda)
The personal and the collective
What is left of love?
The first wife’s refusal to betray him
The second wife’s acceptance of his failings and addictions
World of extremes and paradoxes and contradictions
With occasional resolutions
And squeaking denouements
(Enter A. Miller)
A Canto General
Celebrating the power of the imagination to transform the world
The power of words to set us free from within our bondage
Our tragic and irresistible need for recognition
To exist for someone and in our own eyes
Galaxies of high promise over a fear of falling
(Enter A. Miller)
What will make us stand on our feet, or fall?
Neruda IS a moveable feast
ADDITIONAL TRIBUTES TO THE POETIC
Two other modes of the “poetic” (artistic/creative) voice: theatre and painting as staged in the following recent releases:
THE BEAUTIFUL DAYS OF ARANJUEZ
Wim Wenders and his thought-provoking adaptation of the eponymous play by Peter Handke
Wenders as we “experienced” him in his groundbreaking Wings of Desire.
At cross purposes, perhaps, with his New World achievements such as Paris, Texas and Don’t Come Knocking…
Similarities, yet, can be discerned…
Let’s watch again and look
Theatre and painting, creativity and vision through the friendship of two teenagers who defy the walls built by adult suspicion and prejudice.
A modern version of Huck Finn?
Tow Sawyer also applies.