martes, 1 de diciembre de 2015

The Museo de Arte Moderno of Buenos Aires: a great experience for actor

Actors are artists. They attempt to look at reality in different ways, knowing that there are diverse ways of understanding "reality" (or the role they are working on!)

The Museo de Arte Moderno, snuggled into the charming colonial neighborhood of Buenos Aires, offers artistic excitement for those willing to allow their senses to be aroused. For example, you can “experience” (there is no other apt expression to describe it) Marta Minujín’s “La Menesunda (mixture or confusion). 
Only eight persons can enter at a time and no high heals please! Up you go climbing narrow stairs, oh dear, some ancient looking tv screens showing episodes from the 1960’s (The Menesunda was inaugurated in that decade and reconstructed recently in the museum). And then down some steps. Ooops! A man and a woman semi-naked in a comfortable looking double bed! They simile at you. You think of that last time you slept with your couple, or the first time you made love or…the last time.
Oh God! You get stuck in a small round room with a husky looking guy. Your fears are allayed when he smiles timidly at you. So how in the Hell are you going to get out of here? Hmm. You’ve got to find the right combination for a lock. 4567. No! 3448. No! On the fourth try the little door allows you to push into the next phase of the exposition. 

Minujin is an artist who has dedicated her life to seeking ruptures to conformist notions, new ways of reading the significance of objects, alternative languages, challenging, provoking a reorganization of thinking patters. The Menesunda was a provocation and its objective was to take people out of the doldrums of everyday life and oblige them to come face to face with everyday objects or situations in such a way as to see them in different ways.
After returning to “reality” you can also explore another exciting exposition, called “La paradoja en el Centro,” which features great argentine artists of the 1960’s who also had a decidedly non-conformist and rupture-like attitude—including some 130 pieces of art by a long list of artists, including Antonio Berni. Some would “destroy” conventional artwork in order to recreate it. Curious. That artistic attitude coincided to a decade in Argentina and the world where rupture, rebellion, revolution and non-conformity were the predominating factors of social and political life. Art is not an island in and of itself. The sensitivities of artists are influenced by the world that surrounds them

miércoles, 11 de noviembre de 2015

Demonstration class of dramatized poetry December 12th

We have the words in our hands, our lips seek the sounds, we feel an internal turmoil near our heart, the tips of our fingers vibrate strangely as if they had an energy of their awesome light seems to shed a multi-colored rainbow over our bodies, our eyes see what they have not seen, our ears pound out newfound rythms...the rehearsal has begun!!
       But we don't need to wait until we get together with our companions at the theater. We should develop a routine--accompanying our daily physical tune up--a time and a place of our own, in the quietness of our living room, on a flower covered path, in front of the mirrir, taking a shower. One of our most difficult tasks is to make the poet's words are own. That comes with repitition, seeking hidden symbols, images, our own meanings (although the "meaning" in the academic sense can represent as much of a stumblingblock as an artistic advance), reading with more speed, more deliberately, looking for the stress, the accent, being enchanted by the sound of the phrase, in a word, allowing ourselves to be carried away momentarily into that magical world of creation. 
        These drills which we do alone or with our companions prepare us for the demonstration class  on dramatized poetry which we will hold December 12th. The act of performing our poems before an audience will reafirm our own self confidence and well enhance our own lives with the enchantment of poetry. Wouldn't it be nice if you could bring a poetic ring, a magical sense to the words that come and go so often without beautification? If you would like to attend the demonstraion class, please communicate with us at

lunes, 5 de octubre de 2015

Tato Pavlovsky passes away

One of Argentina´s most noteworthy dramatists and pioneer in psychodrama, Tato Pavlovsky passed away last night at the ripe age of 82. He viewed art as a way of provoking reflection on social issues. “An intellectual should be a sniper,” he once said.
In November of 1974, while acting in his play “El Señor Galíndez” about the life of a torturer, a bomb went off in the Payró Theater, although he was not injured. Subsequently in 1977 the Military Dictatorship banned his play “Telarañas” and he  had to flee to Uruguay, closely followed by death squads. He managed to seek refuge in Madrid.
          In addition to those two plays, he has been acclaimed for “El Señor Laforgue,” “Potestad,” “Variaciones Meyerhold” and “Rojos globos rojos.”
              During the presentation of his book “Asuntos Pendientes” he responded to a question concerning whether his was a political approach to theater saying, “I am politically compromised but my theater is a theater that tries to enter into the invisible things of our life, in the important historical moments. Not losing what is fundamental to the author. And in my opinion what is fundamental for the author? Not to lose sight of critical insight.”
            Indeed. Theater is vast in its expressive possibilities but as art it should never lose sight of its duty to question, investigate and explore independently of religious or political beliefs.

lunes, 17 de agosto de 2015

Poetry Workshop

"Poetry is the echo of the melody of the universe in the heart of humans," once wrote Rabindranath Tagore. Poetry is freedom, rebellion, provocation, invitation, images come to life and a great source for creativity. That´s why we have begun a workshop on dramatizing poety! Come join us! We meet every Saturday from 2:30 to 5pm at the cozy El Damero theater located near the Spanish hopital in Buenos Aires at 506 Dean Funes street. Bring your own poems, or those by poets you love. You can also check the poems we include in this blog.

The workshop, with the coaching of Alfred Hopkins, is open to anyone over 13 years of age with at least an intermediate knowledge of English. The monthly fee is just $500 pesos. Contact us at

Poetry is an ancient yet fabulous means of expression: the oldest poems go back to more than two thousand five hundred years before Christ! Unfortunately, it has gotten a bit out of fashion. Perhaps when your mother and father fell in love they wrote each other poems, or read verses to each other! In theater the world´s great dramatists, such as Shakespeare and Cervantes, wrote poetry and even used poetic expression in their plays. Wouldn´t it be great to go back to that tradition?

Poetry is perhaps the most free form of literary expression, although it may also be very structured. It is about breaking the rules. Breaking them in order to find new rules. Playing with the enormous potential of language. Expressing deep emotion with few words. Discovering the incredible sensory significance of imagery.

We want to deal with poetry from a theatrical perspective. Therefore, we will be working on breathing, the voice, diction, improvisation, poetry games, role play; how to read, recite or dramatize poems; how to work on the expression of the whole body in dealing with a poem. Although participants will work on the poems they choose, we will also be dividing up into pairs or teams. There will be time for elaborating our own poems and for staging skits based on poetry. The possibilities are vast.

Work with poetry can be an extremely valuable experience in language learning. It can also provide great insight into the unending conflicts inherent in the human condition. Come join the fun!

sábado, 8 de agosto de 2015

Poems for enjoying, reading, reciting or acting out

 "Tyger! By William Blake

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright 
In the forests of the night, 
What immortal hand or eye 
Could frame thy fearful symmetry? 
In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare sieze the fire? 
And what shoulder, & what art.
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet? 
What the hammer? what the chain?
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp
Dare its deadly terrors clasp? 
When the stars threw down their spears,
And watered heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee? 
Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry? 

1794ry your heart with me(i carry it in]

By E. E. Cummings
i carry your heart with me(i carry it in
my heart)i am never without it(anywhere
i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
                                                      i fear
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want
no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you

here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart(i carry it in my heart)


 Why Do You Paint? (Self Interview by e.e.cummings)

                      Why do you paint?
          For exactly the same reason I breathe.
                  That’s not an answer.
       How long hasn’t there been any answer?
                As long as I can remember.
     And how long have you written?
              As long as I can remember.
                         I mean poetry.
                             So do I.
Tell me, doesn’t your painting interfere with your writing?
       Quite the contrary:  they love each other dearly.
               They’re very different.
       Very: one is painting and one is writing.
But your poems are rather hard to understand, whereas your
             paintings are so easy.
                     Easy ?
Of course – you paint flowers and girls and sunset; things
           that everybody understands.
                  I never met him.
Did you ever hear of nonrepresentational painting?
                      I am.
                Pardon me?
I am a painter, and painting is nonrepresentational.
                 Not all painting.
       No, house painting is representational.
   And what does a house painter represent?
               Ten dollars an hour.
  In other words, you don’t want to be serious –
              It takes two to be serious.
Well, let’s see… oh yes, one more question: where will you
           live after the war is over ?
             In China, as usual.
              Of course.
     Whereabouts in China?

 Where a painter is a poet.

A poem by e.e. cummings with no title
“think of it: not so long ago
this was a village”
“yes; I know”
“of human beings who prayed and sang:
or am I wrong?”
“no, you’re not wrong”
“and worked like hell six days out of seven”
“to die as they lived: in the hope of heaven”
“didn’t two roads meet here?”
“they did;
and over yonder a schoolhouse stood”
“do i remember a girl with blue-
sky eyes and sun-yellow hair?”
“do you?”
“that’s very odd,
for I’ve never forgotten one freckle faced lad “
“what could have happened to her and him ?”
“maybe they waked and called it a dream”
“in this dream there were three green and gold
“through which a lazy brook strolled”
“wonder if clover still smells that way.
up in the mow”
“full of new mown hay”
“and the shadows and sounds and silences”
“yes, a barn could be a magical place”
“nothing’s the same: is it”
“something still
remains, my friend; and always will”
“if any woman knows,
one man in a million ought to guess”
“what of the dreams that never die?”
“turn to your left at the end of the sky”
“where are the girls whose breasts begin?”
“under the boys who fish with a pin”

Bluebird (Charles Bukowski) 
there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too tough for him,
I say, stay in there, I'm not going
to let anybody see
there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I pour whiskey on him and inhale
cigarette smoke
and the whores and the bartenders
and the grocery clerks
never know that
in there.
there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too tough for him,
I say,
stay down, do you want to mess
me up?
you want to screw up the
you want to blow my book sales in
there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too clever, I only let him out
at night sometimes
when everybody's asleep.
I say, I know that you're there,
so don't be
then I put him back,
but he's singing a little
in there, I haven't quite let him
and we sleep together like
with our
secret pact
and it's nice enough to
make a man
weep, but I don't
weep, do
Saddest Song (Pablo Neruda) 

I can write the saddest poem of all tonight.
Write, for instance: "The night is full of stars,
and the stars, blue, shiver in the distance."

The night wind whirls in the sky and sings.
I can write the saddest poem of all tonight.
I loved her, and sometimes she loved me too.

On nights like this, I held her in my arms.
I kissed her so many times under the infinite sky.
She loved me, sometimes I loved her.
How could I not have loved her large, still eyes?

I can write the saddest poem of all tonight.
To think I don´t have her. To feel that I´ve lost her.
To hear the immense night, more immense without her.
And the poem falls to the soul as dew to grass.

What does it matter that my love couldn´t keep her.
The night is full of stars and she is not with me.
That´s all. Far away, someone sings. Far away.
My sould is lost without her.

As if to bring her near, my eyes search for her.
My heart searches for her and she is not with me. 
The same night that whitens the same trees.
We, we who were, we are the same no longer.

I no longer love her, true, but how I much I loved her.
My voice searched the wind to touch her ear.
Someone else´s. She will be someone else´s. As she once belonged to my kisses.
Her voice, her light body. Her infinite eyes.

I no longer lover her, true, but perhaps I love her.
Love is so short and oblivion so long.
Because on nights like this I held her in my arms,
my soul is lost without her.

Although this may be the last pain she causes me,
and this may be the last poem I write.     

A Coney Island of the Mind   (Lawrence Ferlinghetti)

        Don't let that horse
                                          eat that violin
              cried Chagall's mother
                                          But he
                                     kept right on

         And became famous
         And kept on painting
                                     The Horse With Violin in Mouth

       And when he finally finished it
       he jumped up upon the horse
                                    and rode away
                         waving the violin

And then with a low bow gave it
to the first naked nude he ran across

And there were no strings

        Wolf (by Kristi Murray)

Look, darling, I did nothing wrong
She didn’t have to follow me this morning.
(Did you never teach your daughter not to leave the path?)
I didn’t even ask.
Just gave her my come-to-bed bad-boy shoulder,
flicked my tail.
How quickly she dropped her pretentious wicker basket –
fat, gleaming cherries rolled out into the mud.
She let her cloak slip from her shoulders
To reveal
The types of hills and valleys
That no child should possess.
I smiled, stalked away.
She followed,
tripping over herself to keep up
with my learned graceful curve
through the trees.
I slipped into my den,
and turned to watch her awkward clamber in.
The forest had turned her wild.
Torn dress, scratched face –
the usual suspects.
But her eyes …
naivety replaced with
raw, carnal lust.
She pounced.
We tumbled through the house
out of the back door,
into the garden,
finally came to rest
On that patch of flattened grass you see over there.
And that, Mrs. H, is where your daughter became
a little less green.

Restaurant (John Terlazzo)

 Me. and the Buddha and Adolf
Sat down to dinner
In some French restaurant
In New York

The Buddha said
"Here eat some"
And gave me a plate
Of Wild-Horse-Changing-Straight- At- Me
Quiche Lorraine.
I said " Thanks, old fart,"
And ran my wet finger
Along the crystal rim
Of his bald head.

Then I took liberties with De Fuhrer.
Using a cake fork and butter knife
I took the heart from his body
And chopping it up real fine
Mixed it with my quiche
And downed it with wine.

And the Buddha laughed like an ass.

When Helen Lived (W.B.Yeats)

We have cried in our despair
That men desert,
For some trivial affair
Or noisy, insolent sport,
Beauty that we have won
Feom bitterest hours;
Yet we, had we walked within
Those toplesss towers
Where Helen walked with her boy,
Had given but as rest
Of the men and women of Troy,
A word and a jest.

Black Woods (by Keven Prufer. From March Poetry magazine)

Do you know where our child has gone?
I’m sorry. Do you know what has become
of him? I’m sorry. [        .] Is he hiding
in a closet? No. Is he crouched among
the shoes? No. [        .] Should we look
in the closets? He’s not in the closets. [        .]
Should we check the empty boxes? He’s not

in the empty boxes. It’s very cold out. [        .]
Probably he’s hiding behind the couch.
Come out, come out! I will count to ten.
One, two, three — He’s not behind the couch.

[        .] It’s very cold out. [        .] Probably
he’s playing a trick. It isn’t a trick. He’s probably
hiding above the ceiling tiles. Hello up there!
He’s not in the ceiling. [        .] It’s very cold out.
[        .] Did he go out? No. Was he wearing
a jacket? No. Was he wearing boots
and a hat? [        .] It’s just black woods
out there. [        .] Did you give him your jacket?
[        .] Did you offer him your jacket? [        .]
Maybe he’s in disguise. Disguise? In your hat
and jacket. Disguised? [        .] Disguised
as you. [        .] Did he climb through your window?
Listen to yourself. Did he step inside you?
Listen to yourself. Is he trapped inside you?
Let go of me. Is it black woods in there? 

The Negro Speaks of Rivers (Langston Hughes)

I´ve known rivers:
I´ve known rivers ancient as the world 
and older than the flow of human blodd in human veins.
My soul has grown deep like the rivers.
I bathed in the Euphrates when dawns were young.
I built my hut near the Congo and it lulled me to sleep.
I looked upon the Nile and raised the pyramids above it.
I heard the singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln
went down to New Orleans, and I´ve seen its muddy
bosom turn all golden in the sunset.
I´ve known rivers:
Ancient, dusky rivers.
My soul has grown deep like the rivers.

I Am Waiting (Lawrence Ferlinghetti) 

I am waiting for my case to come up   

and I am waiting

for a rebirth of wonder

and I am waiting for someone

to really discover America

and wail
and I am waiting   
for the discovery
of a new symbolic western frontier   
and I am waiting   
for the American Eagle
to really spread its wings
and straighten up and fly right
and I am waiting
for the Age of Anxiety
to drop dead
and I am waiting
for the war to be fought
which will make the world safe
for anarchy
and I am waiting
for the final withering away
of all governments
and I am perpetually awaiting
a rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for the Second Coming   
and I am waiting
for a religious revival
to sweep thru the state of Arizona   
and I am waiting
for the Grapes of Wrath to be stored   
and I am waiting
for them to prove
that God is really American
and I am waiting
to see God on television
piped onto church altars
if only they can find   
the right channel   
to tune in on
and I am waiting
for the Last Supper to be served again
with a strange new appetizer
and I am perpetually awaiting
a rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for my number to be called
and I am waiting
for the Salvation Army to take over
and I am waiting
for the meek to be blessed
and inherit the earth   
without taxes
and I am waiting
for forests and animals
to reclaim the earth as theirs
and I am waiting
for a way to be devised
to destroy all nationalisms
without killing anybody
and I am waiting
for linnets and planets to fall like rain
and I am waiting for lovers and weepers
to lie down together again
in a new rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for the Great Divide to be crossed   
and I am anxiously waiting
for the secret of eternal life to be discovered   
by an obscure general practitioner
and I am waiting
for the storms of life
to be over
and I am waiting
to set sail for happiness
and I am waiting
for a reconstructed Mayflower
to reach America
with its picture story and tv rights
sold in advance to the natives
and I am waiting
for the lost music to sound again
in the Lost Continent
in a new rebirth of wonder

I am waiting for the day
that maketh all things clear
and I am awaiting retribution
for what America did   
to Tom Sawyer   
and I am waiting
for Alice in Wonderland
to retransmit to me
her total dream of innocence
and I am waiting
for Childe Roland to come
to the final darkest tower
and I am waiting   
for Aphrodite
to grow live arms
at a final disarmament conference
in a new rebirth of wonder

I am waiting
to get some intimations
of immortality
by recollecting my early childhood
and I am waiting
for the green mornings to come again   
youth’s dumb green fields come back again
and I am waiting
for some strains of unpremeditated art
to shake my typewriter
and I am waiting to write
the great indelible poem
and I am waiting
for the last long careless rapture
and I am perpetually waiting
for the fleeing lovers on the Grecian Urn   
to catch each other up at last
and embrace
and I am awaiting   
perpetually and forever
a renaissance of wonder

Do not go gentle into that good night (Dylan Thomas)

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying now bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men, who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, to late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Saint Judas (James Wright)

When I went out to kill myself, I caught
A pack of hoodlums beating up a man.
Running to spare his suffering, I forgot
My name, my number, how my day began,
How my soldiers milled around the garden stone
And sang amusing songs; how all that day
Their javelins measured crowds; how I alone
Bargained the proper coins, and slipped away.

Banished from heaven, I found this victim beaten,
Stripped, kneed, and left to cry. Dropping my rope
Aside, I ran, ignored the uniforms:
Then I remembered bread my flesh had eaten,
The kiss that ate my flesh. Flayed without hope,
I held the man for nothing in my arms.

The Tiger (William Blake)

Tiger, Tiger, burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand dare seize the fire?

And what shoulder and what art,
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand, and what dread feet?

What the hammer? What the chain?
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? What dread grasp
Dare is deadly terrors clasp?

When the stars threw down their spears
And watered heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?

Tiger, Tiger, burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

Rudaki  (Translated from the Persian by Basil Bunting)

Came to me--
In the dawn, afraid.
      What of?
Her father´s.
I kissed her twice.
On her moist mouth.
      What, then?
       How was it?

may i feel said he (by e e cummings)

may i feel said he
(i'll squeal said she
just once said he)
it's fun said she
(may i touch said he
how much said she
a lot said he)
why not said she
(let's go said he
not too far said she
what's too far said he
where you are said she)
may i stay said he
(which way said she
like this said he
if you kiss said she
may i move said he
is it love said she)
if you're willing said he
(but you're killing said she
but it's life said he
but your wife said she
now said he)
ow said she
(tiptop said he
don't stop said she
oh no said he)
go slow said she
(cccome?said he
ummm said she)
you're divine!said he
(you are Mine said she)

The unknown citizen (W.H.Auden)

He was found by the bureau of statistics to be

One against whom there was no official complaint,
And all the reports on his condust agree
That, in the modern sense of an old-fashioned word, he was a saint,
For in everything he did he served the Greater Community,
Except for the War till the day he retired
He worked in a factory and never got fired,
But satisfied his employers, Fudge Motors Inc.
Yet he wasn´t a scab or odd in his views,
For his Union reports that he paid his dues,
(Our report on his Union shows it was sound)
And our Social Psychology workers found
That he was poopular with his mates and liked a drink,
The press are convinced that he bought a paper every day
And that his reactions to advertisements were normal in every way,
¨Policies taken out in his name prove that he was fully insured.
And his Health Card shows he was once in hospital but left it cured,
Both Producers Research and High-Grade Living declare
He was fully sensible to the advantages of the Installment Plan
And had everything necessary to the Modern Man,
A phonograph, a radio, a car and a frigidaire,
Our researchers into Public Opinion are content
That he held the proper opinions for the time of year;
When there was peace, he was for peace; when there was war, he went,
He was married and added five children to the population,
Which our Eugenist says was the right number for a parent of his
And our teachers report that he never interfered with their education,
Was he free? Was he happy? The question is absurd:
Jad aanything been wrong, we should certainly have heard.

Weather Forecast (Harold Pinter)

The day will get off to a cloudy start

It will be quite chilly
But as the day progresses
The sun will come out
And the afternoon will be dry and warm.

In the evening the moon will shine

And be quite bright
There will be, it has to be said,
A brisk wind
But it will die out by midnight
Nothing further will happen.

This is the last forecast.


You, love, and I,

(He whispers) you and I,
And if no more than you and I
What care you or I?

Counting the beats,

Counting the slow heart beats,
The bleeding to death of time in slow heart beats
Wakeful the lie.

Cloudless day,

Night, and a cloudless day;
Yet the huge storm will burst open their heads one day
From a bitter sky.

Where shall we be,

(she whispers) where shall we be,
When death strikes home, O where then shall we be
Who were you and I?

Not there but here,

(He whispers) only here,
As we are, here, together, now and here,
Always you and I.

Counting the beats,

Counting the slow heart beats,
The bleeding to death of time in slow heart beats,
Wakeful they lie.

( Kenneth Rexroth)

I cannot sleep. The long, long

Night is full of bitterness.
I sit alone in my room,
Beside a smoky lamp,
I rub my heavy eyelids
And idly turn the pages
Of my book. Again and again
I trim my brush and stir the ink.
The hours go by. The moon comes
In the open window, pale
And bright like new money,
At last I fall asleep and
I dream of the days on the
River at Tsa-feng, and the
Friends of my youth in Yen Chao.
Young and happy we ran
Over the beautiful hills.
And now the years have gone by,
And I have never gone back.

435 (Emily Dickinson)

Much Madness is divinest Sense--

To a discerning Eye Eye--
Much Sense--the starkest Madness--
{Tis the Majority
In this, as All, prevail--
Assent--and you are sane--
Demur--you´re straightway dangerous--
And handled with a Chain.


A stranger has come

To share my room in the house not right in the head,
A girl mad as birds

Bolting the night of the door with her arm her plume.

Straight in the mazed bed
She deludes the heaven-proof house with entering clouds

Yet she deludes with walking the nightmarish room,

At large as the dead,
Or rides the imagined oceans of the male wards.

She has come possessed

Who admits the delusive light through the bouncing wall,
Possessed by the skies

She sleeps in the narrow trough yet she walks the dust

Yet raves at her will
On the madhouse boards worn thin by my walking tears.

And taken by light in her arms at long and dear last

I may without fail
Suffer the first vision that set fire to the stars.

TO PAINT A PORTRAIT OF A BIRD (Jacques Prévert, translated by Michael Benedikt)

First of all paint a cage

its door standing open
then paint
something appealing
something beautiful
something tasty
for the bird
then lean the canvas up against a tree
in a garden
in a forest
or in the woods
find another tree and hide yourself behind it
without moving a muscle
sometimes the bird will come right away
but it also could take many long years
before it decides to
Don´t become discouraged
but wait
wait if you have to year after year
the earliness or lateness of its arrival
has no relation
to the success of the work
When the bird appears
if he appears
maintain the most total silence
while you wait for the bird to enter the cage
and once he´s in
softly shut the door with a quick stroke of your paintbrush
one by one blot out all the bars of the cage
taking care not to touch the bird´s feathers
Then paint the tree´s portrait
choosing the most beautiful of all its branches
for the bird
also paint the green foliage and the freshness of the breeze
the dust afloat in the sunlight
and the noises of the insects in the grass in the intense heat
   of summer
and then wait for the bird to sing
If the bird does not sing
it´s a bad sign
a sign that the picture is bad
but if it does sing that´s a good sign
that is to say a sign that you can sign
Then you reach out and gently pluck
one of the feathers of the bird
and you write your name over in one corner of the picture.