Flint

On a whim, I asked a couple of the other mom's at school if they wanted to check out the Robert Frank exhibit at NSCAD (the art college in our city). It was only going to be open for 1 week and a fraction of his iconic photographs from his famous work from "The Americans" would be printed on newsprint, put on display, and then destroyed directly after it closed. The really amazing thing about this exhibit for me is that I actually went. I never make time for art shows. I love to go to them and I cannot wait, am counting down the days until I can be in the same room as Mary Pratt's paintings, but I rarely find the time.  I  diligently write down the dates of the openings in my agenda, and then other things crowd them out.  But when I do, oh my, even if I don't like the art, or cannot understand what I I am looking at, something stirs in me--Something stronger than the strongest opinion, something more fierce than my most well worn argument, something elemental inside me ignites.

In the Robert Frank exhibit, his photography, which predated instagram, and facebook feeds, and even the kiosks at the grocery store for printing pictures, documented a world that did not understand itself in minute detail yet.  It was before we could analyze our world through every comment and every event on twitter and 24 hours news channels. His off kilter capture of the world of wealth and abject poverty that he observed on a trip across the US observed and forced others' to observe the absurdity and gaping chasm that split post-war society against itself.  He is famous for his collaboration with Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac and one of their poems, that they co-wrote with Neal Cassidy was on display.  It dragged me into a black and white world of upsidedowness, and stark seeing of what could be, in different light, selling something to someone.  I came stumbling out of the exhibit nudged, ever so slightly, in a new direction.  How about you? When was the last time art pulled the bricks out of your retaining wall?

Pull my daisy
Tip my cup
Cut my thoughts
for coconuts

Jack my Arden
Gate my shades
Silk my garden
Rose my days

Bone my shadow
Dove my dream
Milk my mind &
Make me cream

Hop my heart on 
Harp my height
Hip my angel
Hype my light

Heal the raindrop
Sow the eye
Woe the worm
Work the wise

Stop the hoax
Where's the wake
What's the box
How's the Hicks

Rob my locker
Lick my rocks
Rack my lacks
Lark my looks

Whore my door
Beat my beer
Craze my hair
Bare my poor

Say my oops
Ope my shell
Roll my bones
Ring my bell

Pope my parts
Pop my pet
Poke my pap
Pit my plum

Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, Neal Cassidy



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