Manger of Incidentals

Art, books, illustration, literature, poetry, United Kingdom



A stunning poem came my way, and I had to feature it in my latest book project.

For you, here is the  poem

We are surrounded by the absurd excess of the universe.
By meaningless bulk, vastness without size,
power without consequence. The stubborn iteration
that is present without being felt.
Nothing the spirit can marry. Merely phenomenon
and its physics. An endless, endless of going on.
No habitat where the brain can recognize itself.
No pertinence for the heart. Helpless duplication.
The horror of none of it being alive.
No red squirrels, no flowers, not even weed.
Nothing that knows what season it is.
The stars uninflected by awareness.
Miming without implication. We alone see the iris
in front of the cabin reach its perfection
and quickly perish. The lamb is born into happiness
and is eaten for Easter. We are blessed
with powerful love and it goes away. We can mourn.
We live the strangeness of being momentary,
and still we are exalted by being temporary.
The grand Italy of meanwhile. It is the fact of being brief,
being small and slight that is the source of our beauty.
We are a singularity that makes music out of noise
because we must hurry. We make a harvest of loneliness
and desiring in the blank wasteland of the cosmos.

It became the focus and inspiration for my exploration of a new book project.

This handmade small book is a lovingly crafted individual piece of work that attempts to reflect the wonder and the majesty of being human through poetry, observation and artwork. It features as it’s main focus a poem by Jack Gilbert. This is a poem that reflects my own feelings of paradox and powerlessness in a complicated, curious world. That is why I have called the project ‘phenomenon’, drawn from the poem /

Jack Gilbert may not be as known to the English audience, but his poetry is inspired by the likes of Ezra Pound and T.S .Eliot, and he combines a meticulous use of language with the control of a master, so that the reader is drawn in and can feel meaning. That is the power of good poetry, the encapsulation and distilling of ideas and feelings, in an attempt to communicate meaning.

I chose Kandinsky’s ‘Circles’ as the visual accompaniment to the poem, and for me it works wonderfully well. I wanted to marry these visions of expanse with the historical expressions of how the universe was once depicted.. We live in an expanding universe, and a personal world of continual renewal and exploration. Human’s have always experienced the world as an environment of change, and it is our challenge to develop methods to sustain ourselves and our companions on this fascinating planet .

If you want to see more of my hand made books you don’t need to go far, there are some featured in this blog on My Etsy Page.



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