Poets United promp #t42 Love
On my favorite number
You call my name
And yet so rare
Thank you Pamela for the post about the Red Shoe Project. Hope you will go to her blog.
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
"The Red Shoe Book Project" by Annell Livingston
Restless hands, a desire to create
Never enough time …
Staying busy is important
Like water that rushes down
a mountain and becomes frozen in midstream
Fingers move in synchronized efforts,
forming – reaching – trying to make sense
Light through a window catches shadows
that spark interests and ideas
Creation, imagination, allows breathing, slow and steady
Pyramids pile high, placing layer upon layer
As we construct what we believe,
An expression of ourselves
Red satin shoes that tap
along the skyline.
Resonating through my brain.
Formations flow ...
Sequins sparkle causing rainbows.
Illuminations – Frivolous ...
Limitless beginnings and endings.
Twinkling – drops of contour.
The future is crystallizing promises,
Happiness surrounds, butternuts and chicory.
Lining a cloud above, clicking and repeating ...
**This is part of The Red Shoe Book Project, an artist's vision conceived by Annell Livingston. She generously asked me to include two of my poems in her project, which are the poems above.
As Annell has explained, "I got the idea for The Red Shoe Book Project from the book, The Madwoman in the Attic. It has quite a bit about the symbol of the red shoe and the creativity of women. As I began to discuss red shoes with women, I realized that so many do not know the meaning behind them...so it seemed the perfect project.
I am very pleased because the writings I have received are all so different. Thus as I had hoped, it will be a jewel with many facets. There are two ideas behind artists books. One is that they be very inexpensive, and democratic, and the other is the idea to make it precious. And the Red Shoe Book Project will be both. "
Posted by flaubert at 4:17 PM
Thank you Vivienne for the post. It looks great!
Posted on March 31, 2011 by vivinfrance
Artist and writer Annell Livingstone is producing an artist’s book The Red Shoes, having invited several poets to participate. Red Shoes are considered a symbol of women’s creativity. Annell says:
The artists’ book is a work of art that is conceived as a book and doesn’t exist in any other form or format. I have become interested in artists’ books and artists book projects. Artist’s book projects are artists’ books, but extend beyond just the book, or may be a series of books. The Red Shoe book project, is the seventh project in a series of artists’ book projects I have completed.
The Red Shoe Book Project is based on the myth of the Red Shoes, as explained in the Madwoman in the Attic, The Woman Writer and the Nineteenth-Century Literary Imagination, by Sundra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar.
I was honoured to be asked to contribute, and here are my three poems, though having read Pamela’s poems on her blog, I feel that mine are unworthy! http://flaubert-poetrywithme.blogspot.com/2011/03/red-shoe-book-project-by-annell.html
Annell is quite happy for us to put the poems on our blogs.
I am really looking forward to seeing the finished book .
Little Red Shoes
Pudgy little feet.
I’ll never find shoes to fit.
Oh but you must, Mum,
I’m ready to walk
and the floor is cold and hard.
Little round red shoes
for his round red feet
so pretty I have to kiss them –
the feet, not the shoes!
Oh don’t do that, Mum
it tickles and makes me
giggle. Ouch! What are you doing?
It seems so hard that you have to grow up,
wear shoes all the time, behave like a man.
Perhaps I won’t buy them, lay carpet instead.
You’re not having red shoes
In the shop Mum was cross
Please, Mum, they’re gorgeous
Red shoes no knickers, Mum’s mantra
Look, the heels aren’t that high,
I could dance all night in those
Oh, no you won’t – you’ll be back by ten.
Does that mean you’ll buy them then ?
We’ll see. Try them on.
Comes next Friday, excited
twirling this way and that
in front of the mirror.
First bra, first nylons
swirly circular skirt
frilly blouse, waspie belt all the rage.
And those shoes …
Dad takes one look and hits the roof
What were you thinking?
She’s only fourteen
Out of the question to go out like that.
But Daaaad …
For once on my side, Mum sticks it out
She’s only young once
let her go.
So I did,
at the school Christmas hop
had a breathtaking time
as I danced with a prefect
the new cricket captain,
red shoes danced all the way home
cast off regret,
forget the blues.
Take a jet
to faraway places
wearing those red shoes.
Thank you Elizabeth!
The Red Shoe Book Project by Annell Livingston
March 31, 2011
About The Dead Woman and Her Dream of Red Shoes
The dead woman didn’t like the darkness, wanted color.
She thought about red shoes.
Thought she could use them to move with ease from here
to there, go anywhere she might please
(she was restless, filled with feckless ideas).
The dead woman knew she was dead, of course.
Wanted only to dig toes in whatever fields she might fallow,
callow of meaning, buried in shallow sand on narrow spit
of land that pointed to the sea,
but never quite reached it.
The dead woman thought because she was dead,
she could dance like Mr. Bojangles, clicking
her heels to impossible heights, alighting
back home with mere flick of boney ankles.
She planted dreams, like kisses, on cheeks of small children,
thought they would bloom, fill rooms
with sweet fragrance.
Then had to watch them perish, a slow lingering death,
never given breath of permanent existence.
With nothing of nurture to keep them alive, they swiftly
wilted, tilted in leaning towers of dimming powers,
collapsing one on another.
Soon crashed with huge splash into sea that swallowed them
whole in cold liquid bosom.
The dead woman sighed, she had so much time to fill.
Knew she must release illusive red shoes.
Must plant bare feet in rich moist soil, actually do toil
of feeding her dreams, nurture them daily,
bringing each one to its own fruition.
The dead woman knew she must begin again.
More About The Dead Woman and Her Dream of Red Shoes
The dead woman couldn’t see her feet, of course.
She couldn’t feel them either.
So, she dreamed of dancing in red shoes, through eternity.
She dreamed of dancing with a pauper, a prince, and a political
appointee, a chef, a truck driver, an accountant,
a research biologist, and a university professor.
But, none of them noticed because she was a dead woman.
The dead woman laughed, she sang, she threw herself
into the dance. She moved.
She knew she was no more than a fleeting whisper, momentary
vapor, a slip of air to be brushed aside with flick
of a finger, a shake of the head.
The dead woman went right on dancing, trying to be whatever
She so wanted to be more than invisible, more than dead.
The dead woman dreamed through eternity and into the next,
always dancing in red shoes.
The color excited her, spoke of passion, pursuit, put-off prolonged
dreams seeking fulfillment.
She dreamed of sneakers, velvet slippers, flats and strappy
stilettos, died leather moccasins, and hard vinyl crocs,
all of them red: red like blood, like living.
The dead woman dreamed that all women everywhere wore
red shoes: maids to matriarchs, dancing their dreams
She dreamed through two eternities, until the Universe was filled
with laughing women, all moving toward individual
dreams in red shoes.
Satisfied with her creation, the dead woman rested.
Elizabeth Crawford – for the Red Shoe Book Project.**
**This is part of The Red Shoe Book Project, an artist’s vision conceived by Annell Livingston. She generously asked several of us to write poems to be included in her project. Mine is above and is the result of two different poems combined in the form of Dead Man Poetry created by Marvin Bell
As Annell has explained, “I got the idea for The Red Shoe Book Project from the book, The Madwoman in the Attic. It has quite a bit about the symbol of the red shoes and the creativity of women. As I began to discuss red shoes with women, I realized that so many do not know the meaning behind them…so it seemed the perfect project.
I am very pleased because the writings I have received are all so different. Thus as I had hoped, it will be a jewel with many facets. There are two ideas behind artists books. One is that they be very inexpensive, and democratic, and the other is the idea to make it precious. And the Red Shoe Book Project will be both. “
Thank you Annell, for the invitation and the opportunity to write about a subject dear to my heart: Women’s History.