Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Do You Remember Mobiles?

Alexander Calder,
From police gazette to circus,

I wrote as if I were writing to my favorite uncle,
The formality playful, but knowing he would know
The joy I felt in dotting my I’s and throwing my words
like a lasso, whirling
Until the battery ran out.

There is nothing he would not feel,
Animated, and the playful muse
He followed was forever getting lost
In some woods whose trees grew
Like redwoods, even with shrub and twigs
strewn around like a campground.

He put sculpture into motion,
I read, and I moved with him,
Hands quickly at my pocket flaps, fingers
Wiping clean, quickly, then on to more
Bending and prodding, shaping,
So motion knew what it must do
In the shapes I gave it,
That moment.

No wonder they grew,
No wonder they moved,
Those shapes,
Excited to be alive.
He knew.


National Gallery of Art Collection

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