I have lived in Winnipeg all my life and the Winnipeg Art Gallery has been an important part of my artistic growth over the years: I visited the King Tut display in elementary school, took art lessons as a child, have volunteered as a docent and now enjoy the Art for Lunch program. In fact I started writing because of an event at the gallery in the ‘70’s. University of Winnipeg theatre students would recite poetry on the second floor just under the skylight that is still there. But they were dressed in period costumes as they recited the poetry of the Beats, such as Allen Ginsberg, and another week as the English Romantics, such as John Keats. I was so impressed that I began to take poetry much more seriously (I was attending the U of W at the time), and am creating poetry currently as a full-time writer.Below is an ekphrastic poem (a poem concerning a work of art) about Calvin Yarush’s Rosary that I saw in January 2012 as part of the exhibit In the Expanded Field: Sculptural Installations Since 1970 curated by Alex King a visiting intern from London, England.
His Regulating Destructive Compass
After Calvin Yarush’s sculptural installation Rosary
As if Paris had been laid waste.
Deux gars fighting in the Champs. Ruined.
“Chien!”, rolling into the gutters. Ruined.
Even the column toppling in Place Vendôme.
Falling at the front door of the Ritz. Ruined.
Rue de Rivoli looted. Garment-strewn.
A shoe without its partner. Ruined.
Au long du trottoir. Cobblestones thrown up. Ruined.
Like warming a serpent on the breast.
Rosaries in traffic barriers and chains. La Bohème.
Only the lover’s hands remembered. Ruined.
From the coffin of a well made room. The fiddler.
Playing the street in front of the hotel.
Burned at Le Chat Noir, his face sewn. Ruined.
by Ron Romanowski