David Jones, artist and poet (1895-1974) begins his PREFACE TO THE ANATHEMATA :

'I have made a heap of all that I could find.' (1) So wrote Nennius, or whoever composed the introductory matter to Historia Brittonum. He speaks of an 'inward wound' which was caused by the fear that certain things dear to him 'should be like smoke dissipated'. Further, he says, 'not trusting my own learning, which is none at all, but partly from writings and monuments of the ancient inhabitants of Britain, partly from the annals of the Romans and the chronicles of the sacred fathers, Isidore, Hieronymous, Prosper, Eusebius and from the histories of the Scots and Saxons although our enemies . . . I have lispingly put together this . . . about past transactions, that [this material] might not be trodden under foot'. (2)

(1) The actual words are coacervavi omne quod inveni, and occur in Prologue 2 to the Historia.
(2) Quoted from the translation of Prologue 1. See The Works of Gildas and Nennius, J.A.Giles, London 1841.

14 October 2009

A day for little things, no doubt

Decades ago I made some images to accompany a friend's suite of small poems that were to be published. As far as I know this did not eventuate, but I often have cause to recall the proposed title : A day for little things, no doubt, but who would dare despise it? (Zechariah 3:1-4:14)

This morning I had that feeling. First, over breakfast, delight at a selection of old advertising blotters and trade cards that arrived in the mail. Then the delivery of something larger by the parcels postman. As he handed it across he added what a good and friendly night it had been at Petrus's birthday party (see previous blog). This time we got to talking. His name is R. He does drawings too, always has, and still hopes 'to take it further someday'. He asked if I knew G, another of the local posties. I do. G had lent him a DVD about the sculptor Bernini. Extraordinary artist, Bernini, we agreed. The parcel was a copy of Melbourne's un Magazine sent by K. What topped the lot was the unnecessary, therefore special, extra layer of inside wrapping. Sheets of bright colour patched together for mere pleasure's sake.

A Person Looks At A work Of Art/

someone looks at something . . .