Monday, May 13, 2013

Final pages of Artful, a row of sparrows & cuck-oo, cuck-oo

My last breakfast on this terrace for a few weeks. Once again in the company of the Cuckoo (just one I think from the sounds),2-3 arguments of sparrows –at one point several aligned on the new keep-the-dogs-in-the-garden fence and of course, our black redstart family, with young that each day fly further and further away from their home in the Twisted Willow.

And, yes, I have finished Ail Smith’s innovative book –Artful- the book I started last year and gave up, just couldn’t understand the form or viewpoint. I obviously thought it worth a second go as it was left in the book basket not put away on the shelves –or what counts for shelves here at the moment,- lots of books are stacked/stored temporarily on the large shelf called the floor. 

So, a second read, trying not to be distracted by the position of the narrator  -a grieving widow who sees, smells, hears her dead lover –not unusual in my experience but it didn't;t fit with the other writing at least not at first. .So the 2nd time I just focused on the essay writing about time, form, edge, offer and reflection, and to enjoy the way Smith brings in poetry and prose, especially Dickens's Oliver Twist, Not sure enjoy is the correct verb for my final verdict on this clever book, But there’s lots in there to reflect on, right now I would highlight the exposure of form related to poetry & prose – Plath, Gunn, Katherine Mansfield are all drawn on to illustrate the arguments.  And there’s a great section on the screen in our contemporary lives.

Perhaps this book is a touch too clever.for  me. –lots of references in there that I didn’t get but they tempt me to read it all again. I guess that’s it. For me, this is a book to struggle through the first & second time, to skip where its impossible to break through with any understanding of what is meant and return to for a third read. Also, each section stands alone, so worthy of dipping into each on their own. Good value then in such a small rather off of the wall text.

That Cuckoo is still sounding off. clearly still in need of a mate. I#m going to finish my coffee and hope for a visit from the Hoopoe. I was sure I saw it yesterday –that unmistakable Mohican headgear but not much colour so maybe it was a Skylark. Clearly, my bird watching skills need more practice …. the binoculars and coffee are ready.

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