Sunday, March 05, 2006

Group Formation

The Romantic Future

When do I write you ask
In the morning and again

At night when do you write?
Is the light involved at all

Or time as I have time we say
To right something or is nothing

Made to stand again by this action?
And is it the same nothing

You know when you have written or
When you act listening

Does the action stand for
A new you or new year

More abstract and younger than you
Or I appear as if

You were a man and I
A question posed between us

Were the weeds, flowers and low scrub
Of the bulb how would we

Write or would the words
Written or blood spilled

Rewrite the lines in our palms
Changing the present into something

We don’t believe in like Romantic Futurism
Or the palms and pampas grass

Of the punk pirate paradise
Going out into the bay

Articulated earlier as being
The state one is in when

Present in this geography
From the beginning Gotardo

Piazonni, Tonalist, was in touch
With F. T. Marinetti, Futurist

But chose to paint the plaster pillars
Of California and the moons

In his head made plain and
Flatly we are not there but here

At the corner of the table with the poets in a painting by Fantin-Latour, one of the Societe de Trois as he, Legros and Whistler called themselves. “Whistler, American,” Pound bragged. Rimbaud and Verlaine are in the picture. (It is an homage to Baudelaire). The postcard is faded from hanging in the sun in our living room until you died and I moved out. It is visible also in a photo of Wallace Berman in Semina Culture -- iconographic for an extended generation of writers and artists. One poet in the picture appears to be wearing the characteristic down jacket of the seventies. I knew him. Rimbaud looks out. Verlaine is in love, his forehead like a moon above his face. I see us in disguise or it's our fate I see.

Whistler as Pan by Beardsley
Also called Enigmatic Love

The eight or five or three who formed a like-minded group of artists banding together to generate sales were not seen at the time as a movement and can only be seen now as the imaginary community that it was. Unsatisfied personal desires and professional ambition were nothing to the nonconformist ideals and despair that characterized their lives. Here is Whistler draped over an expensive chair in his exquisite Bohemian costume. We picture him together. Or you alone. “I have no time for the possibilities of success.” Duncan wrote. “Each fulfillment precludes it.” ["From A Notebook," Fictive Certainties]

Snapping out of it
The room fills with air

Where we are present
It starts up again

This never being lucky
Except when we are

It is the one day of the year when we meet in the plaza of the little hill around the corner from the gun shop. Did I tell you I am from the country you are currently idealizing? It is busy here in the café. I remember what you will say in advance about the surface of the real. I started with the cards long ago.

They are virtual now
Like yourself at this moment

An egret fills the window
Of the sky with wings

An older lady with patterns
An umbrella with rain

That is me she says of the weather
The reader finds her place on the screen

When letters are exchanged
What happens is electric

The rain collects
The reader is also a collection

She thinks of you
When she thinks of me

Let him stand for anything
She says Let him go on

Laura Moriarty
from A Tonalist, the person, the manuscript, the movement.

The painting is Un coin de Table , 1872, by Henri Fantin-Latour.


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