Sunday, July 22, 2012

Exit Stategy, A Magpie Tale

Figure Eight, Franz Joseph Kline, 1952

This image comes from Tess Kincaid and is the image prompt for this week's "The Mag".

To see the work of the other participants, *click here*

Franz Joseph Kline

Born: 23-May-1910
Birthplace: Wilkes-Barre, PA
Died: 13-May-1962
Location of death: New York City
Cause of death: rheumatic heart failure
Remains: Buried, Hollenback Cemetery, Wilkes-Barre, PA

Gender: Male
Religion: Jewish
Race or Ethnicity: White
Occupation: Painter

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Abstract expressionist painter

University: Boston University (1931-35)
University: Heatherley School of Art, London (1937-38)

Exit Strategy

You died of a broken heart,
more anonymous
than abstract, nor alone.

You stood the painter using
cans of black and white
and you tore your page
from the metro phone listings
with utter practice
over and over.

Me too. Here with my loose lines,
I will shiver out,
shaking them all off.

July 22, 2012 11:18 AM


  1. This one fell together so nicely...had to read it out loud...

  2. When you can identify with the artist, your thoughts become so much more intense and meaningful. Thank you for sharing this insightful work, Christopher.

  3. The opening stanza is very good..all the way to the ending lines ~ Shivering out,nice exit strategy ~

  4. i wanna know a bit more behind the tearing out the pages of the phone book...

  5. Kline was said to practice with his pieces, often using newsprint or other cheap paper to create smaller spaces for composition. Also he insisted on house paint most times rather than painter's paint. Then he would do his larger work knowing what he was going to do and even projecting from his original study a magnified version against the painting canvas. If you look close enough at his work you will see that the white space is almost always also painted. While he tried to evoke spontaneity he did so with a total control of his space.

    I used phone listings to stand in for the newsprint. When this poem stands alone no longer part of a Magpie it will evoke the sense of connection I want. Metro phone listings are tight and small. My loose lines are a shabby contrast.

  6. A good, informative post. Thanks.

  7. Wonderful read, but so sad to die of a broken heart!

  8. Love the way you teach me something I hadn't known before ... I learned that his wife (a ballerina) suffered with mental illness which impacted his life enormously.

  9. Thank you for this informative post Christopher.

    Anna :o]

  10. Nothing wrong with house paint - or loose lines


The chicken crossed the road. That's poultry in motion.

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