Home | Search Serendip
Serendip

from The Third Age in Paris
by Arleen T. McCormack

"... from a proposed book entitled The Third Age in Paris which refers, in gerontological parlance, to the last slice of life where wisdom is profound, creativity abounds, and peace of mind is at last in sight."

Arleen T. McCormack is, among other things, the mother of Elizabeth McCormack, a faculty member in the Department of Physics at Bryn Mawr College who, among other things, brought this exhibit to Serendip and helped prepare it for the web. Poems and much of the artwork were completed during 1999 when mother and daughter spent six months together in Paris.


The Third Age in Paris


Arleen T. McCormack

"Walk on air against your better judgement." Seamus Heaney

"I know that only those will remake the world who are rooted in poetry." Apollinaire

Introduction

My interest in the plastic arts predates my poetry but never have the two been reluctant companions. Indeed, couplings and integrations have been a theme throughout my life. I believe that combinations, be they familial or large-scale human, evolve naturally and that they are primal.

The binding of poem and painting yields a paradigm of infinite scope and mirrored attachment. Poems form local metaphor illustrated with words that describe a symbolic structure. Conversely, paintings deploy structure that present fixed forms. In lay terms, one may "wax poetic" on witnessing a painting, and also "see" a poem and effect a visual scene. For the beaux art connoisseur this book's couplings of poem and art work could appear somewhat artificial and constrained; the tie-in too closely bound, however, paintings of long standing stature have often evoked personal poems of immediate meditation and conversely, who can read Keats Ode to a Grecian Urn without visualizing a form. It seems this function of catalyst accommodates all stages of life and many constructions of works of art. Ordering and sourcing are in the creative "stare of the viewer"; artistic ascendancy is reached when you discover the pieces not only compliment each other, but none are missing.

With the above in mind, I hope the "reader" of this pictoral display will bond with the following articulations and presentations. They are my opus produced in Paris, 1999, while on a "sabbatical de deux" with my daughter at the kindest of her many inducements to journey into the wideness of the world.

These excerpts are from a proposed book entitled The Third Age in Paris which refers, in gerontological parlance, to the last slice of life where wisdom is profound, creativity abounds, and peace of mind is at last in sight.

Dedications

To James. Our pilgrimage continues. Your fellowship is received. You magnify my life and insights.... a perfect coupling.

To Elizabeth. I have begun a journey into the wideness of the world. Finding myself at this, my "third age", in the Paris of 1999 is beyond any awaiting on my part. Rather, this walk comes as a largess from you, my daughter; a sabbatical-of-two may I say, and thus my pleasure is two-fold, both in succoring company and the granting of an opportunity for grand inventions.

To Family. Primal and weighty recognition I give my siblings. The grounding they supply with sundry dousings of reality has made this global journey performable.


Bedchamber


Moving Day


Anticipation


La Dansuese


Abandonment


The Asp


La Fille Francaise


Notre Dame Pieta


Looking for Cezanne


Paris II


The Opera Coat


Marriage Evening


The Orange


You Mean To Give Me Nothing


Ismene and Her Sister


Lascaux Olympia


Pyrenees


Bilbao Ball Players


Bread Sellers


Mere and Fille


La Visage Giverny


Narcissistic Considerations




from The Third Age in Paris
by Arleen T. McCormack

on Serendip
Write to Arleen T. McCormack

| Forum | Guest Exhibitions | Serendip Home |

Send us your comments at Serendip

© by Serendip 1994- - Last Modified: Saturday, 19-Nov-2005 07:34:52 EST