The collage pays homage to John Ashbery’s poem “Heading Out” in the volume Breezeway. John Ashbery’s poem “Auburn-Tinted Fences,” in his volume Quick Question, includes the word “glacis.” After reading the poem at an Interview hosted by Al Filreis, February 12, 2013, [item 3 at ~4:10], Ashbery quipped, “I wonder if what I was really trying to do was to fit the word glacis into a poem. I’m not entirely sure what it means.” [listen to the audio here] I suspect the same might be true for “sockdolager,” which Ashbery uses in “Heading Out.” “Heading Out” is, itself, a sockdolager of a poem, about which this collage offers but a glancing glimpse.
Sergei Prokofiev, Visions Fugitives, Op. 22 (1915-17) (with thanks to Bert Carter at GCAS for noting these works)
On Spotify (Matti Raekallio, pianist)
On YouTube (Steven Osborne, pianist)
These twenty miniatures (average length about a minute) take . . . their title and inspiration from these lines by the Russian Symbolist poet Konstantin Balmont: “In every fugitive vision I see worlds, / Full of the changing play of rainbow hues.” . . . Prokofiev’s biographer Israel Nestyev describes them as “something like entries in a diary” and as “experiments from a laboratory, a storehouse of materials to be used in the future large works of a composer always eager to increase the scope of his art.” [citation]
Bonus Track: John Ashbery at Kelly Writers House 2-12-2013, discussing Auburn-Tinted Fences with Al Filreis; photograph of John Ashbery by David Shankbone. (The discussion of “glacis” starts at 4:10.)
Credits: The text in the collage is from Ashbery’s poem “Heading Out.” The image and underlying collage, as always on the blog unless otherwise indicated, are mine.