Monday, August 06, 2012

Monday Mixtape: 5(+) selections inspired by summer fireflies

Each week, usually on Monday, I compile a metaphorical mixtape, a few "tracks" of art I can't wait to share with you.  It might help you to know that tracks are loosely related by theme and very much influenced by whim.

Two times in my life, on a summer evening, twinkling lights of fireflies transported me to an otherworld . Two times stand out above every other field-chasing, jar-waving summer nights.  One night, fields lit up beind the canvas scratch of our family tent.  We left our cold bottles dripping condensation through the meshy campchair cupholders and chased the dashes and dots lighting upstate New York grass field.  A light dusting blessing over a friendship richer than time and space.  
This summer, a second enchantment, walking another evening in step with the six-foot-four stooped frame of my beloved.   We'd slept seven nights tucked again into the upstate air we call home; we'd fought badly and stayed on our own sides of the bed.  We snatched the interval of one night away from all others, hoping to re-wind the flickering bulb of energy between us.  In the house held a room, a bed, a half-drunk bottle of New York state wine.  In the yard, between the country dark road and the yellow lights of the back porch a mature eastern spruce ascending forty feet at least.  We slammed the car doors shut, punctuating the silence of upstate country, spoke nothing finding our way toward the house.  On some sort of mystical cue, the dark outline of the tree lit up in tiny explosions of buzzing light.  At first I thought it was the work of our hostess, some sort of twinkle display purchased from her Bed & Breakfast network.  
"Is it real?"  
Brian assured me the light was authentic.  Just to be certain, we sat on the porch glider, my head resting over top the space of his beating heart.  

This week I've curated for you a collection of artwork flickering the firefly light of mesmerizing beauty.


track 1: thirteen piano recordings (instrumental playlist)

This playlist contains thirteen piano tracks, both contemporary and classical, including music by Bach, C. P. E.Diabelli, and Grieg

track 2:  light bulb installation

Source: via Tamara on Pinterest

May I suggest you watch this beautifully animated photograph while listening to at least one of the piano arrangements from the track above?  

via This is Collosal blog:  As part of his senior thesis exhibition at Musashino Art University in Tokyo, art student Yasutoki Kariya re-imagined the ubiquitous desktop gadget, Newton’s Cradle, using a lovely sequence of light bulbs. Entitled Asobi (which translates roughly as “playing“) the 11-bulb installation creates a visual interpretation of the popular toy named after Sir Isaac Newton demonstrating his third law of motion regarding momentum: that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. However, instead of actual energy created by the kinetic force of steel balls, Kariya devised a method for using programmed light and two surreptitiously placed pistons to create this purely visual experience that’s arguably more mesmerizing than the original concept.

track 3:  The Lantern Parade by Thomas Cooper Gotch (painting)

                                                                     Source: via Tamara on Pinterest

track 4: Fireflies by Teruo Araya (photograph)

Photo: A long exposure of fireflies in a forest

via National Geographic:  The dream of the night of summer. Many Japanese visualize the dead's soul, seeing the light of a firefly. It is charmed by the light of a firefly as if it was seeing the momentary dream.

track 5:  Fireflies by Marilyn Kallet (poetry)



In the dry summer field at nightfall,
fireflies rise like sparks.
Imagine the presence of ghosts
flickering, the ghosts of young friends,
your father nearest in the distance.
This time they carry no sorrow,
no remorse, their presence is so light.
Childhood comes to you,
memories of your street in lamplight,
holding those last moments before bed,
capturing lightning-bugs,
with a blossom of the hand
letting them go. Lightness returns,
an airy motion over the ground
you remember from Ring Around the Rosie.
If you stay, the fireflies become fireflies
again, not part of your stories,
as unaware of you as sleep, being
beautiful and quiet all around you.
Poem copyright ©2009 by Marilyn Kallet, from her most recent book of poetry, Packing Light: New and Selected Poems, Black Widow Press, 2009. Reprinted by permission of Marilyn Kallet.

bonus track:  behind the scenes of Exploded Views at SFMOMA (art installation)

To A Husbandby Amy Lowell 
Brighter than fireflies upon the Uji River / Are your words in the dark, Beloved.    


Before I go, I should tell you that I love to hear what poems, pictures, songs and reasonable words you are enjoying.  Please do stop by the comment box and share a bit with me.  

Hoping that you find your common days aflame  with good books, 
pictures, poems, songs, words and ideas!
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