"A portrait is a picture in which there is just a tiny little something not quite right about the mouth." -- John Singer Sargent

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

e e cummings

This 1958 self-portrait of e e cummings (Edward Estlin Cummings, October 14, 1894 – September 3, 1962) hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington DC.
"Poet E. E. Cummings, who famously avoided uppercase letters in his writings, declared that 'poetry and every other art was and is and forever will be strictly and distinctly a question of individuality.' Believing that poetry was visual as well as verbal, Cummings defied rules of punctuation, capitalization, and arrangement of words on the page in his poems of the 1920s and 1930s, offering a new literary experience for Americans. For some, he demonstrated the rich possibilities for self-expression; others he left feeling uncomfortable and annoyed. In either case, his radicalism made an indelible mark on twentieth­ century letters and, in the words of one critic, extended 'the capabilities of poetry' well beyond its traditional limits. As this self-portrait indicates, Cummings was also a competent painter. After serving in World War I, he studied painting in Paris and exhibited his work in New York." -- National Portrait Gallery
anyone lived in a pretty how town
(with up so floating many bells down)
spring summer autumn winter
he sang his didn't he danced his did

Women and men (both little and small)
cared for anyone not at all
they sowed their isn't they reaped their same
sun moon stars rain

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