The Blog of John Walford, British-born, but long resident in The United States. I am an art historian, currently studying satire in Netherlandish art, an amateur photographer, and occasional writer, who writes here about art, photography, and the human condition--some of it ekphratic poetry, responding to works of art. This is to be a site for words and images, interacting on one another, as vehicles of human expression.

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Saturday, February 27, 2010

Ahmad Kavousian's "Farewell to the city I love....."

"May sun shine on your path, and wind be always on your back"

I sit and grieve,
Know not what to say,
Ahmad is going away.
Why should we mourn?

Lisbon or Vancouver:
Isn't it much the same,
For us your Flickr friends,
Where space dissolves.

Why should we grieve this way?

But we know the wrench
Of such a move, the hard
Goodbye, lives left behind,
Your little Pedrom........

And we know the draw,
Each heart does need,
Their own Graca -and to
Her arms and love -

We commit you - our friend.

May the sun shine on this great change,
removed, once more, from the soil you love,
and may peace fill your courageous heart.

In friendship, John W, Feb 27, 2010.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Ahmad Kavousian's "Life in Olympic Land... Behind the scene"

"Vancouver Olympian Left-behind"

Somewhere, quite near,
A cheering crowd.
Lights are shining,
Speakers blaring names;
Competitors preparing
For the next heat -
Olympians

But as they compete,
And people cheer,
Others, so near,
Know no cheer,
Hear no cheer,
Not even worth
Being towed away.

Behind the scene,
Another scene,
Excluded from
The bigger scene-
Yet here,
With compassion,
Seen.

To Ahmad, whose artistic sensitivity for the underside of life, the downtrodden, the excluded quietly softens our calloused hearts.
In gratitude, John, February 21, 2010.

Flickr's Rongzoni's "Still but yet a dance..."


Still but yet a dance..., originally uploaded by Rongzoni.

"Still there, still still, yet dancing"

Twenty-first of February,
It's still there, and still,
But for a boat,
Cutting the bay.
Land yet clad
In its nocturnal dress,
Blue and purple,
Does it redress.

Lovely, Helen!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Flickr's dou_ble_you's fantasia, "Le déjeuner sur l'herbe"


Le déjeuner sur l'herbe, originally uploaded by dou_ble_you.

"A shot of UU tonic"

When inspiration runs quite dry
Here is what you do:
Cook up some stodgy stuff -
Like this -
Variations on a Famous Picnic, 1863-2010
And send to dou_ble_you.

Then you so sure can be
That where grass you see,
In fact is sand, and what?
Olympian artists, slinky dames,
And somewhere there,
Laughing, a cross-legged guru.

--JW, for UU, Feb 6, 2010, with thanks for stoking the creative juices, once again.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Flickr's dou_ble_you's "sweet bird of good news"


sweet bird of good news, originally uploaded by dou_ble_you.

"The Bird"

Some just look and glance away,
Some think through their eyes,
And see rare birds in flames of
Light - bearing laurel in the beak.

Some pass, tossing trash,
Recycled papers blabbing
"Enterprise," - or was it
"Surprise," at a rare bird -

Glanced fiercely in fiery flame?
--JW, for the redoubtable UU, Feb 5, 2010.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Flickr's Rita Crane's "First Morning in Venice"

To the Doge's palace
Did many a stranger come:
Merchant, ambassador,
Traitor, and some.
Then came Rita and Peter,
Showing us all, Gothic arches,
Ornate lamp posts, pelicans,
Pillars, and pinnacles, --

And yes, winged lions.

--JW, for Rita, Feb 4, 2010.

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John Walford

John Walford
Not All That Meets The Eye

About Me

My photo
United States
I am a British-born, art historian, teaching in the USA; I studied law, in England,1964-68; worked part-time in the art world, 1968-69; then studied art history at the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, 1969-76; completed my Ph.D. diss. at the University of Cambridge, 1981; moved to the States in 1981, and have since written, or co-authored, other books. I am currently studying satire in Netherlandish art. My wife, Maria, was born in Milan, Italy, where she worked as an interpreter, in business; she spent seven years in Switzerland, at the University of Lausanne, 1963-70. She came to Amsterdam in 1971, and we soon married. She is a wife, mother, literary critic, of Italian (and French) literature, and completed her Ph. D. diss. in 2002, at the University of Chicago, on Cesare Pavese and His Critics. We have three married children, and eight grandchildren, all of whom we excessively adore! I welcome dialog about art, photography, human behavior, beliefs, and motivation from all comers, regardless of race, color, gender, orientation, values, or beliefs. This is to be a site for words and images, as vehicles of human expression, around topics of mutual interest.

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