Posts Tagged ‘cinepoem’

Tempest

Sunday, January 18th, 2015

 

It’s been a long time.

A long, long, long time since there was a new cinépoem in the house. Two whole years, in fact.

So I’m beyond ecstatic to announce a new cinépoem featuring the lovely Lucette de Luna (for the second time) and introducing the gorgeous and frighteningly talented Caroline Augusta (a formidable artist in her own right.)

 

The new vid isn’t on this site, however… technology issues and the need for a whole new website redo, my webmaster tells me. But you can find it at the usual You Tube channel for all my cinépoems, and it will probably show up on vimeo before too long, as well.

 

Go take a gander, and if you want to read along, here’s the poem itself…

 

TEMPEST

There is nothing civilized
about love.

Not the way she does it…
a living thing
of hoof and horn
of dervish whirl
and lunar howl.

She abides in the eye of a season of storms
where there can be no allowance
for abnegation–ask her to deny herself
and you ask the moon to abandon the sky
and orbit instead around your shoelace.

Her love is unfit
for polite company.
prone to violence.
subject to squalls.
she goes in for a kiss
and takes out your eyes.

Society will not stand
for such barbarity, will demand
a dress code and Corinthians
which is, of course, a language
she has not learned to speak.

But then again, she will never
lie or vamp or hide
behind starched and lacquered protocol.

What you see is what she feels.
unrefined. unrestrained. undiluted.

She stomps feet, she seizes hearts
in sticky-fisted strangleholds,
then guards her stash like a dragon’s hoard
roaring MINE and MORE.

The best strategy for survival is to Get To Her First.
hunt hard and fast, chase her down softly
like a wild winged thing.
(Do not try to tame her.)

Gather the Tempest in your arms
and hold her close while she rages,
for in her wake follows
the most dazzling sunlight,
the likes of which exist
only in dreamscapes
and photoshop.

In all your days you will never again see
a love so true.

-Lo, who knows from experience.

Life Is What Happens

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

cornfed

Damn. I mean, Damn!

I have never neglected this space for such a long time. In fact, I used to post a minimum of once a week fairly effortlessly. But then, there are a lot of things I used to do that have become past tense.

If there are any of you out there still reading, I apologize for the long silence. It was an unintended sort of thing. A month would go by, and I would think, “I need to update the blog.” But then I would get busy, for there are a million and three things on the to-do list, always. Or I would be too tired (see aforementioned list). Or I’d get distracted by a tiny corn-on-the-cob waving lass (see above photographic evidence).

Or I would just think, “I have nothing to say that anybody wants to hear.”

And that may still be true. Or maybe it never was. But in the end, I’m doing this for me. I’m reclaiming this space to reclaim a small part of myself that feels lonely and lost.

Around the time of my last blog post, some six (gasp!) months ago, I began writing a poem which in drafts has alternately been titled “Heart” and “Lost” but will likely not be called either of those things by the time it’s finished.

I began it in a haphazard style, having awakened one day with an idea for a new cinepoem blazing in my brain. But the poem must come before the cinepoem. So I wrote, awkwardly, as you do when trying to wake a sleeping limb.

My brain felt numb and the words felt heavy and I struggled through five lines. And then I put it away and thought, “I will come back to this.”

And now it’s July.

Anytime I would think of the blog or the poem, (in between scrambling eggs while the tot sat in her highchair banging a spoon and chanting “eggseggseggseggseggseggseggs!” and trying to race down to fling blankets and tiny PJs and multicolored socks into the dryer before the tiny PJ owner noticed my absence and going to work and coming home and remembering to say hi to Bruce and squeeze in a “Howwasyourdaydear?” In between all of that,) I would think, “Oh, it hasn’t been that long. Surely I’ll have some time tomorrow. I’ll carve out an hour.”

And now it’s July. No-one is more surprised by this than I.

This day isn’t any more or less busy than any other day, but this is the hour I’ve managed to seize. And perhaps it’s true that I have nothing to say. Nothing anyone other than me finds fascinating, anyway.

But it IS fascinating to me. This life with all of its chaos and tumble and rush. It’s endlessly fascinating.

The way she says new things, every day, that show a little mind whirring and buzzing and becoming. The way her hair grows in frantic ringlets all over the back of her head but on top, and in front, it’s perfectly straight. The way she climbs to the top of the tallest ladder on the playground, fearlessly. The way she brings me books and climbs into my lap and says, “Sit here a minute, mommy.” The way she runs, with graceless toddler bravado, arms flailing, pigtails boinging. The way Bruce and I will catch each other’s eye over her head at random moments and just grin at each other like, “Can you believe this?!”

The silence of the past months, it seems, is an indicator not just of busy-ness but of becoming-ness. Of tired-ness. Of happy-ness. Of all the -nesses that make up a life.

And someday I’ll write all about it. Someday the words will catch up.

In the meantime, I’m going to grab an hour when I can. And I’m going to finish that poem and name it something ravishing. And I’m going to shoot a cinepoem. Soon. Like in a matter of weeks soon. (Really. Shel and I have a shoot date on the calendar.)

And if you’re still here and waiting, you’ll be glad you did.

-Lo, full of wishful hopeful thinking.

From Russia, With Love

Monday, December 26th, 2011

russia_saratov

In mid-November, I received an email from Ekaterina (Kate), a high school English teacher in Saratov, Russia. She and her students had found the cinépoems, and “Alice is my middle name” was their favorite.

The class had a school competition coming up, and they wanted to memorize and recite the poem, so Kate asked if they could have my permission to do so, and if I could send them the text of the poem, since transcribing it from the video was difficult.

I was astonished to discover that the cinépoems had traveled all the way to southern Russia. It’s just one more way the internet has made the world a much smaller place. Amazing.

Of course, I gave her my permission and sent the text of the poem straightaway. I also helped them find the music we used for the cinépoem.

And yesterday, I received the most lovely Christmas present ever.

This is a video of Julia, reciting my poem “Alice is my middle name” in her English class the day before the competition. She borrowed the blue Alice dress from a local theater.

julia_alice Alice in Saratov

Kate told me that Julia was nervous when they shot this video and “didn’t feel like an actress.”

I think she’s lovely. And she must have done well at the competition the next day, because her performance won 3rd place!

Congrats to Julia and all of her classmates, and a huge thank you to Kate for seeking me out. I’m so glad Alice made it all the way to Saratov.

Here’s the poem that started it all, for all you Alices out there:

Alice is my middle name

The light turns green and I’m off again
out looking for my wonder land
searching every rabbit hole
turning over every mushroom bowl

the clock gets louder
with each passing year
it stares me down
it finds the fear

so I shuffle up a hand of hearts
I pour myself a stiff blue dress
and the light turns red
(it’s all in my head)

but the plates keep spinning
and the cats keeps grinning
and that most important date
just keeps showing up late

it’s never the right time
it’s never, ever the right time

when the charge runs down
(as it often does)
I jump start my heart
to the marching band,
to the ticking tock

sometimes I could swear
I hear the sound of clouds
slamming on the brakes
slowing down to watch

and every time the sky turns blue
I stop somewhere
I wait for you

and every spring the grass turns green
I take that leap
of faith again

(You go further
when you get a running start)

Watch the original cinépoem

-Lo, who finally did find the right time after all.

Sacramento 2011

Wednesday, April 6th, 2011

annie

The Tyranny of the Mirror, an eight-part cinépoem that features lots of lovely ladies like Annie, up there in the toe shoes, is screening this weekend at the Sacramento International Film Festival.

We’re part of the NorCal AllStars group, and you can see us on the big screen at 11a.m.-ish this Saturday (April 9) at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento.

If you’re in northern California this weekend, stop by and check us out!

-Lo, with the promo.

Tornado Weather

Monday, December 27th, 2010

jessica

A belated Christmas present just for you… a shiny new cinepoem.

This one is called “Tornado Weather”. It was shot back in May in my hometown of Dixon, Illinois and features the lovely Jessica Hussung. Since I was 6 months pregnant at the time of the shoot, I had a lot of help from my friend Anna, who also happens to be Jessica’s mum.

So thanks to both of you, Jesse and Anna! And thanks for being so patient and waiting so long to see the result of your hard work on that steamy summer day.

You can check out Tornado Weather on the cinepoems page, as always, and also on YouTube. If you watch it on YouTube, be sure to leave a comment or thumbs up there.

It’s the last cinepoem for awhile, I’m afraid. I have ideas for new shoots in the new year, but nothing is in the can yet.

And to answer the question many of you have been asking me… Yes, the Bean will be making her cinepoem debut someday, but I might wait until she can walk first.

Merry Christmas, Happy Boxing Day, and Bonne Annee to you all.

-Lo, with love and great expectations for 2011.

Mind Over Mirror

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

tyranny

We started shooting on a rainy day in January. I had just found out I was pregnant, so I wanted to hurry up and shoot my vignette before I got as big as a barn.

My goal was to finish the entire thing before the baby arrived. But “The Tyranny of the Mirror” was our most ambitious cinépoem to date, and it took a bit longer to complete than I planned.

One cinépoem with eight parts — eight different scenes, eight different women, eight different voices. The poem, as a whole, explores our obsession with our mirror image. It takes a look at a bunch of different ways that the mirror, and how we see ourselves in it, affects us, no matter who we are.

Because I’ve never met any woman who is entirely satisfied with the way she looks. As the poem goes, ...I am not satisfied/I could always be thinner/Mind over mirror.

So I have several people to thank for this one.

My fearless partner in cinépoetry, Michelle Brown, who is usually behind the camera but lent her face and her voice to this project, and starts the whole cinépoem out with a bang in “earth suit.”

Lani Alo, making her cinépoem debut in “thick around the middle” and flawlessly delivering that muffin tops line.

Lisa Sims, also a cinépoem virgin, looking good under a pink-hued sky in “grande y bonita.”

Kathy Azada, cinépoem veteran, holding her own in “dressing room.”

Johanna Baldwin, another first timer, looking fine in “skinny jeans.”

Melissa Fondakowski marks her second cinépoem appearance by eating on camera in “zaftig.”

Annie Leuenberger, also new to cinépoetry, did an amazing job in “cell memory” getting up on pointe.

And Aaron Purvis returns for the third time with an original score that he composed just for us. It’s gorgeous.

So a huge thanks to all of you, and also to my man Bruce, who shot “earth suit,” as well as all our fabulous assistants. This wouldn’t have happened without you!

Now, go see our biggest cinépoem ever, “The Tyranny of the Mirror,” now playing on the cinépoems page and also on YouTube.

-Lo, who can’t believe we finally finished it!

Must-See Fotographie

Saturday, November 6th, 2010

somarts

If you live in or near San Francisco, there’s an art exhibition that’s up for the month of November that you simply must see.

It’s Julie Michelle’s i live here:sf retrospective, and it’s at SomArts on Brannan Street.

If that name sounds familiar, it’s because I’ve spoken about Julie before. She took some gorgeous photos of Bruce and I, when we were expecting (which I need to add to the gallery here, and soon!), and, about a year ago, she let me be a part of her fabulous i live here:sf project… see here.

The show is amazing, lots and lots of fun things to look at. The opening reception is over (it was last night), but the show will be up for the rest of the month, so go see it!

In other news, The Tyranny of the Mirror, a cinépoem that Michelle Brown and I have been working on ALL YEAR LONG, is *this* close to being finished. You should be seeing it soon.

I also have another cinépoem in the works that a few people in Illinois have been very patiently waiting for, and I’m hoping that I will get that completed this year, as well, new baby or no!

Speaking of babies, my niece Josette is still in the NICU and has now had two surgeries because of an intestinal defect. She is currently stable and doing well as surgeons wait to see if the latest operation was a success. I just saw her a couple of days ago and she’s getting bigger and is cute as a button. Your continued thoughts and prayers for the little gal are welcome and appreciated.

-Lo, over and out

Altered State

Monday, August 30th, 2010

mood: accomplished | drinking: yes

altered_state

At long last, a new cinépoem!

This isn’t the big one I’ve been talking about all year. That one, “The Tyranny of the Mirror” is still in the editing process and will make its debut in a month or two.

But this one is pretty special. Earlier this year, when I was about 5 months pregnant, Boy and I took a big trip to Europe. We called it The Babymoon Tour, because we knew it would be our last chance to go on such a big adventure, just the two of us, for quite awhile.

One of the stops on our Babymoon was Prague, and since we had packed a video camera, we decided to take full advantage of being in such a lovely city and record a cinépoem.

What followed is “Altered State”, a sweet and simple little cinépoem. I wrote the poem about coming to terms with the changes that having a child will bring, but it could really be about anything… just depends on where you’re at when you read it. Or, in this case, see it.

I’ve had a big long list of things I wanted to finish before the Bean arrives, and this was at the top of the list. I guess my nesting instinct also takes the form of making cinépoems.

So go, take a look. You can watch “Altered State” on the cinépoems page or on YouTube.

Just keep an eye out for the peacock.

-Lo, who’s quite pleased with herself.

Here’s to New Horizons

Wednesday, December 30th, 2009

mood: list-less | drinking: all done

new_horizons

Everybody and their mother likes to make lists around this time of year. Lists of all the things they loved about 2009. Or hated. Lists of the top songs of 2009, the top movies, the top news stories, the top celebrity meltdowns.

I’m a list lover, too, I’m not going to lie. But this year, instead of looking back at the 364 days behind me, I’m going to look ahead to what’s on the horizon.

So here’s my contribution to the blogosphere’s collection of lists…

Ten Things I’m Looking Forward to in 2010

1. Settling into the new home with Boy and LeeLoo: Unpacking those last few boxes. Building new bookshelves. Sprucing up the backyard. Taste-testing all the neighborhood eateries. Finding new routes to walk to the beach. Discovering a whole host of lovely new things about my new ‘hood.
2. Shooting our new cinépoem: “The Tyranny of the Mirror” is our biggest cinépoem to date, with 8 separate shoots in 8 separate locations and our fabulous ensemble cast of 8 gorgeous ladies (including my very own sister). It’s going to be amazing.
3. Going back to Illinois to see my parents and various and sundry friends: This year was the first year since I’ve moved to California that I didn’t return to my hometown, not even for a quick visit. It was weird. So I plan to remedy that omission in 2010.
4. Getting back into the running routine: I was doing so well there for a couple of years, but the whole house-selling, temporary-apartment-living, house-buying thing kinda messed it all up. Time to get back into the groove.
5. Teaching my nephew new words: He’s two years old now and at that super fun (and dangerous) stage where he likes to parrot everything you say. Fun times for Aunt Lo.
6. Thursday night writing group: More great critiques, more great poems, more great bitch sessions, more great Chinese food. Bring it, girls!
7. Vacationing with Boy: We have a big anniversary coming up, and we’re going to celebrate that milestone in style, come hell or high water. The question is not “if” but “where?” and “when?” (I’ve got Prague on my wishlist, and my passport is itching for some action.) We’ll have to wait and see.
8. Exploring more gorgeous nooks, crannies, and weirdos in this gorgeous city I call home: It seems that every year I find something new here, uncover some previously unknown nugget of awesome about this place. I have no idea what I will discover or who I will meet in 2010, but I’m ready for it.
9. Growing my hair out: Yes, it’s a weird item to include on this list but I just keep whacking my hair off before it reaches the desired length and I swear this time I’m going to curb the impulse to whip out the scissors. Let it grow, let it grow, let it grow.
10. Finding something good in every day: It’s something Boy and I have been trying to do a lot of, a tactic that began out of desperation. In the middle of one of the most difficult years of our lives, we realized that moaning about everything that was going wrong wasn’t making a rough patch any smoother. So we started trying to find something to be grateful for every day, something good in each other, in the people around us, in the smallest, most random happenings. And it works. Not only by making life a bit easier, but by making yourself a lot easier to live with. A good way to go about new beginnings, wouldn’t you say?

Alright. You’ve got my list. How about yours? What are you looking forward to in 2010?

-Lo, who’s also looking forward to all of you lurkers figuring out how to use the comment section.

All God’s children are not beautiful.

Friday, November 13th, 2009

mood: almost there | drinking: agua

homogeneous_startBreak out the confetti cannons. A new cinépoem has arrived.

I’d like to present the latest This Blank Page poetry production, Homogeneous, featuring the voice and face talents of the lovely Emanuela Quaglia and the always fabulous Jim Doll.

This is a cinépoem like no other. Not only because you get to actually hear from the guest stars, but also because we filmed it “in triplicate.” Just take a look, you’ll see what I mean. You can view it on The Cinépoems page or on YouTube. (If you do head over to YouTube, be sure to leave us a star or five, yeah?)

Thanks to my fellow compatriot, Michelle Brown for her continuing dedication to the art of cinépoetry, which sometimes includes getting in front of the camera, and also to Kathy Azada (who served as production assistant AND extra). And special shout outs to Melissa Fondakowski and Darren Rodriguez for their sparkling cameos.

Go. Watch. Enjoy.

-Lo, trying to make herself presentable.