Figure in a Room




It’s not much to offer in return.

I escape into the accommodating mist,

embarrassed and too far lost in other landscapes

to embrace the yes or the no.

‘The 100’ #82 – The Infusion of Fluid


The infusion of fluid


cannot sustain the roses,

they are not comic paper blooms

fed by alliterative liquids,

they need sweet rain,

admiring glances

from the wine drinkers

on the patio,

naked heat

and a wandering nose

to embrace

in scarlet scented intensity.

They need bird song

and fat worms,

the living throb

of rich dark earth,

and at least one poet,

who, dizzied by love

is reminded only

of his lover’s mouth,

the burning petals

of her night and

the infusion of fluid.


art and poem by clinock.

art: acrylic and mixed media. Click on image for best view.

‘The 100′ series was initiated by my 100th Post in April 2012. As text and images are the essence of my blog my intention is to present 100 pieces of textual art from historical and contemporary artists and from my own hand. To view the series to date click on ‘The 100’ in my Category Menu.


Ghosts Pass By…

Ghosts Pass By

Ghosts pass by.

Abandoning their armchairs, stubbing out cigars,

swigging the final drop of vintage port

they leave by the back stairs

hanging a sign on the closing door

as they go:

“See You At The Parade.”


Ghosts pass by

evicted from my pineal penthouse,

no longer welcome.

Long squatting ended

they join the Felliniesque fandango

and pass on by – animals, sprites and

crying phantoms in wheelchairs and on stilts.


Ghosts pass by

and turn their eyes my way

but no longer have a claim on me.

In wide hats, feather boas

and cloaks of stars they pass, but no longer stay

cluttering dreams for days and years

with swirling mists, droning gabble and icy threats.


Ghosts pass by

the darkened windows of my night and I

watch their two dimensional ambling

with eyes of dawn. The parade is long and filled

with fascinations, fears and the magics of moon.

But I have cut the chain

and am exorcised by love.


Painting and Poem by Clinock.

Painting: 20″ x 30″. Acrylic and oil on canvas. 2013. Click on image for more detail.

Mexico Redux 3 – A Yarn of Magic…

For explanation of this series please see Mexico Redux 1.

I wrote this post just before leaving for an extended painting trip to Mexico in January 2012. I have edited the original for this redux.   I talk about Huichol art because the high desert surrounding San Miguel De Allende (the town I paint in) is home to the ancient peoples and rituals that give birth to this art form. Huichol art has always been cloaked in a veil of mysticism — probably one of the reasons serious collectors seek out this form of artesanía. Colourful, symbolic ‘yarn paintings,’ inspired by visions experienced during spiritual ceremonies, characterize Huichol art. In the ceremonies, shaman artists ingest peyote, a hallucinogenic, which induces brightly coloured visions; these are considered messages from their ancestors. The symbolic and mythological imagery of these visions influences the art, which encompasses not only yarn paintings but also fascinating masks and bowls decorated with tiny colored beads. ‘Yarn paintings’ are created by patiently and sensitively adhering hundreds of strips of brightly coloured yarn to a solid background to form images such as are seen in the artwork above.

I purchased this ‘yarn painting’ from Antonio, a Huichol shaman artist in San Miguel De Allende. Despite our difficulty in conversing – his English and my Spanish being poor – I understood that certain symbolic images appear in this work. I wrote down what I could understand of what Antonio told me about those images and have made a tentative translation of his words into a poem of sorts:

Wearing the mask of the sacred deer the Healer dances until dawn around the ceremonial fire. We all dance until dawn around the ceremonial fire.

Taking the meat of the sacred deer the Healer feeds the people and the gods around the ceremonial fire. We all feed each other around the ceremonial fire.

Before the dawn the Healer must perform the cleansing. The Moon offers the Healer her secret power of wisdom and dreams to perform the cleansing and we are cleansed.

After the dawn the Healer must perform the healing. The Sun offers the Healer his secret power of heat and light and with eagle feathers the Healer performs the healing and we are healed.

At noon the Water God sends the Hummingbird. The Hummingbird is the third blessing of the dance. The Hummingbird brings laughter and children and blesses the Healer and we are all blessed.

At sunset the Healer blesses the corn. The blessing of the corn offers hope for a full harvest, offers hope for our health and for our children’s health, offers full bellies for us all.

In this way we honour our gods. In this way we honour our ancestors. In this way we honour the earth. In this way we honour ourselves.

 Huichol Yarn Painting by Antonio / Poem by Clinock.

Musa Inesperada 5 – se entiende…

Musa Inesperada 5

The poem ends.

Planets shift through the width of a word

shattering suns across time.

Symbols scratched on broken glass

fragment moonlight.

Truths are spoken and surfaces collapse

into ragged voids of falling.


Now is the hollow man

stuffed with straw, fool’s bells in his head,

borrowed smiles stitched to his mouth

and an ice pick in his heart.

For a moment he was song,

a poem for all seasons and

a naked hero

littering his quest with cast-off armor.


For one sweet breath he parted clouds

on home made wings,

consumed in fire, burning as he fell.

But it’s winter now, and night.

Spring and dawn are written out

of this play,

Icarus has the leading part

but falls again and again.


The music plays on and

The music plays on, but only

echoing silence breaks through to

more echoing silence

and the owl,

and the voices of wolves

tearing the night’s peace

into regurgitated shreds.


Yet still my muse

offers branches of light…


“Lord I just can’t keep from crying sometimes,

Lord I just can’t keep from crying sometimes,

When my heart is full of sorrow

And my eyes are filled with tears

Lord I just can’t keep from crying sometimes”.


Poem and drawing by clinock. Drawing: Pastel and conte on paper. 8″ x 10″. 2013. Click on image for more detail.

I Just Can’t Keep From Crying – Old American blues – Blind Willie Johnson.

Musa Inesperada 4 – La Musa Velada

M veiled

O Crown of Light, O Darkened One,
I never thought we’d meet.
You kiss my lips, and then it’s done:
And I’m back, back on Boogie Street.

A sip of wine, a cigarette,
And then it’s time to go.
I tidied up the kitchenette;
I tuned the old banjo.
I’m wanted at the traffic-jam.
They’re saving me a seat.
I’m what I am, and what I am,
Is back on Boogie Street.

And O my love, I still recall
The pleasures that we knew;
The rivers and the waterfall,
Wherein I bathed with you.
Bewildered by your beauty there,
I’d kneel to dry your feet.
By such instructions you prepare
A man for Boogie Street.

O Crown of Light, O Darkened One,
I never thought we’d meet.
You kiss my lips, and then it’s done:
And I’m back, back on Boogie Street.

So come, my friends, be not afraid.
We are so lightly here.
It is in love that we are made;
In love we disappear.
Tho’ all the maps of blood and flesh
Are posted on the door,
There’s no one who has told us yet
What Boogie Street is for.

Boogie Street by Leonard Cohen and Sharon Robinson.

 Painting by clinock.  Acrylic on paper. 11″  x 15″. 2013. (Click on image for enlarged detail).