D…do do do..d..da da da da is all I want to say to you; or Why Make Art

If I’m not actually writing, I try to be at least making something — a video poem, a series of drawings, some act of creativity. Recently I made a, as it turns out, rather elaborate and complicated accordion-binding book with a cover made of two small picture frames within which I made collages. (Yeah, I haven’t been doing much writing lately….)

It was quite an undertaking, and I had never made such a thing before, so it has some flaws — I folded some of the pages incorrectly and had to refold, so the old folds are still evident; I pasted some of the sections together on the wrong side so the pasted portion shows instead of being hidden behind the new page; an item has already fallen out of one of the collages. You know how things go. But it was a process, and a product, and therefore, satisfying.

I showed it to a friend, who said, “Oh, what are you going to do with it?”

I became confused. Was I supposed to do something with it? I thought the doing was the doing. I thought the showing-someone was also a sufficient doing. Was there more? Am I supposed to…what?…submit it to an art show…sell it on eBay?

Okay, I write poems, and some of them I send out to try to get published. Some of them I put together with others into a manuscript. Some of them get thrown away. Some sit around in their underwear for a very long time. If I was required to “do” something with everything I made I’m not sure I’d make stuff at all.

Or do I only make stuff because somewhere in the back of my mind there’s a possibility that I’ll do something with them, like get them published, win international acclaim, cash prizes, etcetera?

I don’t know. I’m sort of flummoxed.

I just wanted to make this thing and show it to someone. Now it sits around looking at me like it’s waiting for my next move.

So. Here it is. This is my next move. Ta da. Let the international acclaim and cash prize flow.

4 thoughts on “D…do do do..d..da da da da is all I want to say to you; or Why Make Art

  1. And so this has a poem of yours inside. Which one? And how can I get a copy of this amazing book. And can you make more? And if you want to make blank books or not blank books, I will be happy to represent you in the West. How can someone not want one of these.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It has a whole chapbook inside! You know these poems — it’s the erasures plus the Teilhard de Chardin text. Each poem folds out into its erasure, and the prose rolls across the top. It was such a freaking pain to do, I’m pretty sure it’s one of a kind. I would do something similar again — but with fewer poems!!!! I’ll bring it in October.


  2. Pingback: Poetry Blog Digest 2019: Week 6 – Via Negativa

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