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Georgic Fantasy reveals a timeless, yet ravaged landscape and the ravaged humans who toil in it, culminating in a mysterious, legendary act of violence, and falling away into a moral tale which echoes faintly the Appalachian folktale that helped inspire the poem. Ben Jasnow, a Classical scholar, has written a narrative sequence of lyrics into which is woven a visual response, a series of thirteen paintings by the artist John Woodman, whose brilliant colors and gestural marks made upon photographic imagery illuminate — even seem to express — the desperate emotions which erupt underneath the poem’s Classical restraint.
Ben Jasnow is an American poet and Classicist currently based in Saratoga Springs, N. Y. John Woodman is an English painter who lives and works in London. Georgic Fantasy is available on iBooks.
Some years ago, Robert Schultz, a poet, witnessed an exhibition of photographs printed in the flesh of leaves of trees and plants, portraits of war-worn Vietnamese and of Cambodians documented in the killing fields of the Khmer Rouge.
These chlorophyll prints, as they were called, were made by Binh Danh, a Vietnamese-born American photographer. About his method, Binh Danh wrote, “This process deals with the idea of elemental transmigration: the decomposition and composition of matter into other forms. The images of war are part of the leaves, and live inside and outside of them. The leaves express the continuum of war. . . As matter is neither created nor destroyed, but only transformed, the remnants of the Vietnam and American War live on forever in the Vietnamese landscape.”
Caveboy, A Poem, by Mary-Sherman Willis. Art by Collin Willis. We enter the Paleolithic, at the dawn of art-
making. Humans have evolved into adept hunters who know the world with their senses and their dreams. The poet envisions a Boy, a teen-ager, who is being prepared by his mother for his first hunt. He is successful and kills a doe. That night, a girl comes to him for the first time. In a dream, once again he tracks a doe and finds himself in a cave occupied by his mother’s totem, the bear.
Caveboy is as a multi-touch book for the iPad and Mac.
Peter Kalifornsky (1911-1993) was a member of the Kenaitze Indian Tribe, a Dena’ina Athabaskan who lived in Kenai, Alaska. He was the last speaker of his language—a dialect of Dena’ina—and the first to bring it into written literature. Among his ancient tales was Ggugguyni Sukt’a, Crow Story, which tells how Crow (the Raven) gave songs and their first story to the Campfire People. Long time ago, it begins, the Dena’ina did not have songs and stories. Then came the time that Crow sang for them. Till then, as they worked together and traveled, di ya du hu kept them in time . . . .
From the First Beginning, When the Animals Were Talking, The Animal Stories is the first of four volumes. It includes Peter Kalifornsky’s animal stories in their American translation matched with his conversations with Katherine McNamara, so that the tales and their “back stories” speak to each other. This multi-touch edition, available on iBooks, allows the reader to follow Kalifornsky’s stories and his thoughts about them, simultaneously.
With I Went into the Large Space, a reader holds in her hands a digital book of contemplation. She may look at a drawing, then touch and expand it to observe a fine line, a curve, a space evoked. He may then swipe gently to see the photograph that was its model, perhaps virtually entering the scene it reveals. She may wish to view only drawings, then only photographs. He may look, pause, turn to a poem.
Lyndia Terre writes, “memory is a strange part of sight. . . ” In the calm succession of these closely-observed images drawn and photographed while Terre was the first Artist in Residence at the Horticulture Centre of the Pacific, Victoria, B.C., I Went into the Large Space offers readers an intimate exploration of gardens and wild lands. Just as Lyndia Terre looked around, then looked closely, then moved the camera shutter, then examined the digital print. Then, putting aside everything mechanical and digital, took a No. 2 pencil and a sheet of Stonehenge paper and began to draw.
I Went into the Large Space is on iBooks.
The American poet and translator Katherine E. Young has selected two poems by the Russian poet Inna Kabysh, whom we believe should become as well-known here as she is to her countrymen. Our EB of Two Poems by Inna Kabysh, translated from the Russian by Katherine E. Young, is on the iBooks Store.