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Flatness

Jack Jordan Avatar Jack Jordan - Premium MemberPremium Member Send Soup Mail Go to Poets Blog Block poet from commenting on your poetry

Below is the poem entitled Flatness which was written by poet Jack Jordan. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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Flatness


	Flatness 
	
	
	Consider the possibility of becoming 
	a two-dimensional surface
	with no thickness whatsoever. 
	No, face-down on the floor won’t get it; 
	at best your nose will be in the way. 
	You’ve got to get lower, closer, 
	flounder-like, 
	melting into a puddle of candle wax, 
	or better yet 
	become a film of water 
	whose shapes and edges
	are defined by the shapes and edges
	of the surface on which you flow, 
	merging with the waters of others 
	to the tunes of gravity and surface tension. 
	A bit difficult to contemplate, isn’t it,
	something like the frustration of attempting to fathom
	the edges of the universe?
	
			•
	
	Painters live on the flat surface. 
	Malevich, for instance, 
	was in love with the geometry 
	and mathematics of planes, 
	the possible play of plane on plane, 
	so much so that his tombstone 
	was a thin, flat square of black marble, 
	his grave now lost, 
	existing only in period photographs. 
	Death is always loss, 
	not always being lost. 

	But I digress, again...

	Painterly genius can bring life 
	to the otherwise neutral geometricity of the plane 
	such as do Avery’s skims 
	of fleshy orange and black paint 
	on his canvas of a nude woman in a black robe. 
	She’s featureless yet sensual in her flatness, 
	formless but rich in shape, 
	certain elements of her body defined 
	by only the shallowest possible suggestion 
	of the space that might exist 
	were a slip of paper laid atop another 
	of the same color. 
	The volumes of her body are reduced to outline 
	such that her left breast vanishes 
	into the surface of her body,
	as do the swells and valleys of her belly, arms and legs, 
	only to emerge oh so slightly 
	in the faint roundness of her featureless face. 
	The cutout black-mass drapery of her robe,
	itself all but alive,
	encloses her body as she leans to the right, 
	levitating, supported by nothing. 
	She’s looking directly at me; I’m certain of it. 
	I can feel the worldly otherness of her invisible gaze, 
	read the erotic boredom of her pose, 
	the elsewhere quality of her thoughts, 
	Avery’s thoughts, 
	the clarity of his abstraction, 
	the genius of her simplicity, 
	the unlimited virtue to be found 
	in achieving flatness for the sake of flatness.
 	



http://pintura.aut.org/SearchProducto?Produnum=100674

http://www.davistownmuseum.org/bioMiltonAvery.html

https://www.google.com/search?q=Malevich&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=SlyvUevODorXygHY9IDQBw&ved=0CAoQ_AUoAQ&biw=1150&bih=585


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  1. Date: 6/13/2013 2:06:00 AM
    This was fun to read. Thanx.

    Jordan Avatar Jack Jordan
    Date: 6/24/2013 8:30:00 PM Block poet from commenting on your poetry


    You're welcome. It was fun to write too. Jack
  1. Date: 6/5/2013 10:14:00 PM
    I loved the build up and imaginativeness in the beginning stanza... really cool! I will admit, however, that the painting is quite bizarre, not sure if it's really my style. His work looked more interesting once I clicked your bottom link (I wonder how in the world he paints such smooth angles for all those rectangles?). Once of my all time favorites artists (in this case sketcher) is M.C. Escher... you should look him up! His mix of realism and geometry is amazing.

    Jordan Avatar Jack Jordan
    Date: 6/6/2013 8:33:00 AM Block poet from commenting on your poetry


    Escher is amazing, I agree. I saw other Milton Avery paintings recently, and was taken with the abstraction. I assume you are talking about Malevich. Check the dates on the paintings. They were done long before masking tape, and aren't quite so crisp in person, although they are obviously skillfully executed.