Thursday, March 28, 2013

Lyrical Thursdays: I Dwell In Possibility

Happy Thursday, everyone!!

As I mentioned briefly in my post last week, I've been super duper busy lately and haven't had much free time.  A majority of my time has been spent preparing for an exhibit of a number of my paintings (33, to be exact) in nearby Dexter, Michigan's new(ish) library.  I'm really excited to have all of these paintings up (and out of storage) - and to be able to share them outside of my website and blog!

Around half of the paintings in this show are poetry paintings, many of which have been featured in my Lyrical Thursdays posts, and some of which you'll be seeing in upcoming weeks.  I took a number of pictures today in the hopes of sharing one of them on here, but the photos weren't the best, so I think I'll hold off until next week.  For now, I'll share a short poem by Emily Dickinson that I was thinking about today:


I dwell in Possibility-
A fairer House than Prose-
More numerous of Windows-
Superior-for Doors-

Of Chambers as the Cedars-
Impregnable of Eye-
And for an Everlasting Roof
The Gambrels of the Sky-

Of Visitors-the fairest-
For Occupation-This-
The spreading wide my narrow Hands
To gather Paradise-

c. 1862

It was very motivating for me to prepare everything for this show!  I felt possibilities open up before me as an artist, and that is always a good thing.  It's easy to become discouraged when we face trials and hard times (which these last weeks have been - very stressful!!), but it's better to dwell in Possibility, in what can be, and use that to push us forward!

I'll share more about the show soon, but for now, it's sleep and recovery time!  

Happy Easter!!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Lyrical Thursdays: Limericks

In honor of last weekend's St. Patrick's Day celebrations, I thought it'd be fun to post some limericks.  I actually found a website with clean limericks, which aren't always the norm...  I chose a few of my favorites to share here, and would LOVE it if you wrote one and shared it in the comments!!  Here's my attempt, which describes me lately:

There once was a girl so busy, 
Her head was getting real dizzy.
She had paintings and prose
From her head to her toes
And hair that often was frizzy.

If this post is a little short, it's only because I'm so busy with other creative endeavors that I don't have time for much more this week. Those endeavors will be explained in next week's Lyrical Thursdays, so get excited! 

Happy Thursday!

There once was a man named Hall
Who died in the spring in the fall.
'Twould have been a sad thing
Had he died in the spring
But he didn't, he died in the fall.
—Contributed by Bill Pellow

There once was a musical hobo
Who strung four strings on his oboe.
Said he, "With these strings,
This thing really sings!
I both blow and bow on my oboe."
—Original limerick by Dave Reckoning

Flappity, floppity, flip,
The mouse on the Moebius strip.
The strip revolved,
The mouse dissolved
In a chronodimensional skip.
—Contributed by John Field

There once was a man from Peru
Whose limericks stopped at line two.
—Contributed by John Field

There was a young woman named Bright
Whose speed was much faster than light.
She set out one day
In a relative way,
And returned on the previous night.
—Geri Taran
There was a young man from Japan
who's limericks never would scan.
When asked why this was,
he said: "Tis because
I always try and put as many words in the last line as I possibly can."
—From Barbara Sohngen, Amsterdam
A tongue-twister limerick!
A flea and fly in a flue,
Were imprisoned so what could they do?
Said the flea let us fly.
Said the fly let us flee.
So they flew through a flaw in the flue.
—Contributed by Paul Ogden, Israel
Another tongue-twister limerick!
A tutor who tooted a flute,
Tried to tutor two tooters to toot.
Said the two to the tutor,
"Is it harder to toot, or
To tutor two tooters to toot?" 
—Submitted by Chris DeSantis
(Please record yourself reading these last two out loud and send me the video, would ya? I could use a good chuckle...)  :D

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Lyrical Thursdays: Pure Imagination

This week's Lyrical Thursdays was inspired by an awesome experience I had last Saturday.  A friend of mine was in town visiting, and we went with my older sister into Detroit to meet up with her friends at the Redford Theater.  It's an old theater, the last of the old cinemas of its kind in Detroit, and is really beautiful!

The movie we saw was "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" and BONUS, the actors who played Charlie Bucket and Mike Teevee were there!!!!  All grown up!!!  (Charlie pointed out that the stretching machine clearly worked, because Mike Teevee is normal sized again...)  ;)
The theater was all decorated with Willy Wonka-esque decorations - funky balloons, big candy (not real), candy for sale (real, and necessary - it's impossible to watch that movie and not eat candy, especially chocolate), etc.  (Also, the candy, popcorn, and drinks there are all reasonably priced!!!  It was amazing to be able to buy candy for $1, pop for $1.50, and popcorn for about the same.  Take THAT big, overpriced theaters...)

Before the movie started, there was a guy playing all of the songs from the movie on the organ there in the theater.  He was so good!!

Plus, Charlie and Mike (alias Peter Ostrum and Paris Themmen), along with a guy dressed up like Willy Wonka (sadly not Gene Wilder), came on stage before the movie and during the intermission and talked about their experiences making the movie and memories from on set.  (My sister wrote more about that on her blog, which you can read here.)

The movie watching experience there was great!  Everyone in the audience was so engaged, gasping and clapping when (spoiler alert) Charlie found the golden ticket, and laughing at all of Gene Wilder's crazy antics.  (Seriously, that movie is realllly weird! But awesome!!!)  I loved every minute of it.*  

So, in honor of this experience, I thought I'd share the lyrics (and a video) of my favorite song from the movie - "Pure Imagination."  I love the words in the chorus: "If you want to view paradise/Simply look around and view it/Anything you want to, do it/Wanta change the world?/There's nothing/To it."  What a great message for kids (of all ages...) to hear!

Enjoy, and Happy Thursday!

Pure Imagination

Willy Wonka:
Hold your breath
Make a wish
Count to three

Come with me
And you'll be
In a world of
Pure imagination
Take a look
And you'll see
Into your imagination

We'll begin
With a spin
Traveling in
The world of my creation
What we'll see
Will defy

If you want to view paradise
Simply look around and view it
Anything you want to, do it
Wanta change the world?
There's nothing
To it

There is no
Life I know
To compare with
Pure imagination
Living there
You'll be free
If you truly wish to be

If you want to view paradise
Simply look around and view it
Anything you want to, do it
Wanta change the world?
There's nothing
To it

There is no
Life I know
To compare with
Pure imagination
Living there
You'll be free
If you truly
Wish to be

Composed by Leslie Bricusse and Anthony Newley

*Disclaimer!!!  I know that you're probably way jealous after reading all about this, and are really cheesed off that I didn't invite you.  In my defense, I had no idea going into it that it would be this amazing! Next time, I promise I'll let you know.  And you.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Lyrical Thursdays: Brown Penny

Since I missed a week last month, I thought I'd make up for it with another poem about love.  It's kind of funny, because I am posting these at a time in my life when I feel these poems have little relevance to me personally.  But still, they are moving and beautiful poems, and will perhaps mean even more to me down the road.

I find this poem very enchanting in its lyricism.  I get caught up in the way Yeats uses phrasing and rhythm and a conversational style.  It brings so many images to mind: a young man reflecting on his own, an older man offering advice, a reflecting pool or wishing well, etc.  (I think this is one of the most pretentious paragraphs I have ever written...)

I've heard it recited twice via the wonderful world of cinema.  One I have included below - it's Christopher Plummer reciting it in the film "Must Love Dogs."  (The video is nicely done.)  The other, and my favorite, was on the TV show "Northern Exposure."  Chris Stevens (alias Chris in the Morning, played by John Corbett) recites it in an episode when offering advice to a kid in town.  I love the way that he says it, in the conversational way that Yeats wrote it, and the way only Chris Stevens could (that show is pretty much the best).  Sadly I couldn't find a video of Chris' recital, so I'll leave you in the capable hands of Captain Von Trapp.

Brown Penny

I whispered, 'I am too young,'
And then, 'I am old enough';
Wherefore I threw a penny
To find out if I might love.
'Go and love, go and love, young man,
If the lady be young and fair.'
Ah, penny, brown penny, brown penny,
I am looped in the loops of her hair.
O love is the crooked thing,
There is nobody wise enough
To find out all that is in it,
For he would be thinking of love
Till the stars had run away
And the shadows eaten the moon.
Ah, penny, brown penny, brown penny,
One cannot begin it too soon. 

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Ham Porter's S'mores Recipe

I have recently been eating a lot of marshmallows (plain...raw?) and graham crackers (with peanut butter or dipped in milk).  They're seriously delicious!  (I have the palette of an 8 year-old.)  I haven't gone as far as roasting the marshmallows and adding chocolate, though that is inevitable.  Yesterday I noticed on the back of the graham cracker box that they had a recipe for s'mores.  S'mores!  I mean, who, besides Scotty Smalls, doesn't know how to make s'mores??  

The directions on the box were OK, but I really felt that they should have Hamilton 'Ham' Porter's instructions on there instead.  Much more clear and, well, hilarious.  Since they fell down on the job, I decided I'd do the work for them!  So here, in case you ever need it, is Ham's s'mores recipe, ready for your recipe box.

Click on image for a larger view

(I may be more than ready for summer to be here....)