Ann Chandonnet’s “Subdivision” after Larry Heath

The fall 2013 sequence of poems began with several poems based on a single metal sculpture by Larry Heath. It seems somehow poetic that we wrap up this sequence, then, with a single poem based on several of Larry Heath’s metal sculptures. If you scroll down to the beginning of the sequence you’ll see poems by Kelly DeMaegd and Scott Owens based on Heath’s “Orange Moon.” You can pick up on a reference to that work in the following poem by Ann Chandonnet as well, but you will also notice allusions to other of pieces by Heath, including “Heron Silhouette” pictured below and “Best Friends” pictured after the poem.

Larry Heath, Heron Silhouette, metal, Hickory Museum of Art Collection, Museum purchase, 2012.14.6

Ann Chandonnet
based on the Larry Heath exhibit, “Cutting Tin & Cake”

Your recipe for art:
Take one sheet of recycled tin.
Cut and fold into a dome of trees,
a kite rising white before an orange moon,
a children’s playground, a trio of herons
safely screened from outdoorsmen in a canoe.
Keep cutting, from broad trunks until
you wend your way to the finest branch ends
or threads of grass.

Amazing subdivision of a two-dimensional sheet
into a sculpture that stands alone
in three dimensions. Apply a trace of paint,
chemical jelly, a ball peen, some heat
or discreet burnishing–Voila! a peaceful scene.

Here you bend into being two men seated at a table.
The third friend is a dog, being petted
by the extended hand
of the man in the white cap.
The men enjoy a picnic of delicious talk.
Bright butterflies draw near,
and drink their fill.

Your mother subdivided your face
by binding her belly
to hide your presence.
But you were able to reverse all that unloving,
all that folding of your limbs.
You found your way home
through the grace of creativity.
The transformation is all.

Larry Heath, Best Friends, metal, Hickory Museum of Art Collection, Gift of Sherry Heath Austin, 2012.14.3

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1 Response to Ann Chandonnet’s “Subdivision” after Larry Heath

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