Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Winter, Fare Thee Well

Winter Beds Awaken


Tired gray piles
of granular snow
sit slumped by the roadside
waiting to melt
in the warm noonday sun.

Beneath them
the slender
and varicose
leaves of crocus
tentatively, cautiously,
poke their heads up
through the soil.

With each day,
the piles recede
and the grasslike blades
grow taller.

the snow does melt
and the crocus do
pop out
as if to say,

“Welcome, spring!”

I was inspired by April's being National Poetry Month, and by the crocus photos I took recently, and the unseasonably warm & sunny weather we've been having of late, to write and post this poem today.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy National Poetry Month


bringing all the arts—and the community—together
LACA's Spoken Word
Last week I planned to attend the April installment of the Lamprey Arts & Culture Alliance's Spoken Word, and to take a photo or two for mine and LACA's blog while I was there.

As you'll notice, there are no poetry reading photos posted here. That's because I was at work on a design project (totally immersed, in what I call "the zone") and completely lost track of time—again. Fortunately, I finally remembered where I was supposed to be, closed up shop, and dashed across the street; arriving in time—camera in hand, even!—to enjoy the last hour or so of readings. Not so fortunately, I forgot to bring along the camera's memory stick.

How ironic (and yet pathetic at the same time! :)

The poetry reading was awesome, however. Such a talented (and fun) group of individuals! And the surprising thing is, if you happened upon most of them on the street, you'd never guess that they wrote poetry. So if you find yourself with some free time on the second Thursday night of the month, make your way to Crackskull's in downtown Newmarket, NH, grab yourself a chai tea, pull up a chair and have a listen. You'll be in for a treat. Better still, bring along one of your own written creations—or a favorite poem by another poet; everyone is welcome and encouraged to share.

Poetry on the fly
So, since I didn't get to put up photos from our Spoken Word, check out this wonderful "street poems" video shot in Dublin—what fun!

street poems :: dublin 2009 from ze frank on Vimeo.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Bella Vita: Paintings from Ascoli Piceno


Only one more week before Bella Vita, the current show in my gallery, comes to an end.

Created in the plein air style, by University of New Hampshire Fine Art Graduates Jason Bombaci (BFA '07) and Kathi Smith (MFA '08), the show is a wonderful combination of works from an art history/art study class they attended in Italy during the summer of 2008.

Detail of Georgia's Window by Jason Bombaci

Pink Balcony by Kathi Smith

In addition to the 28 yummy paintings on display, visitors have also been treated to glimpses inside Smith's journals, which are works of art unto themselves.

A spread from one of Smith's art journals

It seems no one can resist the juxtaposition of Bombaci's warm and cool color palettes and his uncanny ability to portray light and shadow in his works. Or Smith's seemingly effortless and spontaneous brush work in response to changing light. Both artists have sold paintings from the show—six in total, which is remarkable given the current economy. As always, our little non-profit gallery is grateful for the public's show of support for the arts in our community.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Welcome, Spring


…and I saw a Robin the other day. Two telltale signs that spring has, indeed, arrived here in New Hampshire.* Since our neighbors across the way (those who live on "the sunny side of the street") already had daffodils in bloom while we still had two-foot snow piles, we had my son rake out the piles a bit, to help with the melting. And lo and behold! There were the crocus poking out to greet us—in all their purple and yellow glory.

First signs of spring

Now I am itching to get into my gardens, clean out the beds, divide some overgrown perennials, put out the ornaments, spread the mulch, plant the annuals...

On Monday morning, I raked and hauled leaves out of one half of one bed before the rain came. It was about all I could handle anyway, before being totally out of energy and breath (and having to get ready for work). At this rate, it's looking like it could take me a while to get them all ready for spring planting, but that's fine with me. It's the simple act of being out there, puttering about, that's the real joy of having a garden in the first place. So, welcome spring!

Oh, sunny day!

*I would be remiss not to add that winter is my favorite season and as much as I like playing in my garden, I, for one, am not happy to see the snow go. You see, I am an avid snowboarder and, even though it's spring on the Seacoast, there's still plenty of snow up on the slopes. Cannon got four inches last weekend and their season is still going strong. Plus, next weekend is the annual Reggae Fest at Sugarloaf (always a good time, mon!). So, even though I welcome spring on the one hand, I still say "let it snow!" :)