21 May 2011

A Review in Verse for Werner Herzog

Werner Herzog's Love Letters (in 3D)

There is not art tonight
But that of memory.
Yet how much room for painting there is
In the tight passages of Chauvet cave.

There is even room enough
For the drawings of my forefather's forefathers,
32,000 years ago,
That have been locked so long
In a slide-sealed limestone cliff
That are etch-edged and fresh,
And liable to shock as Pollock.

Over the great carpet of calcite crystal
Steps of cave man and cave bear.
It is all lit by invisible red flames.
It trembles as rhino limbs rushing through time.

And I ask myself:

“Are your eyes strong enough to bear
these species that are but echoes:
Is this camera strong enough
To carry a wild horse back to its source
And back to us again
Belted over with stars?”

Yet I would lead my grandson by the hand
Through millennia we'll never understand;
And so I stumble. And the crystals drip into stalactites
With such a silence of forgotten dreams.


(All apologies to Hart Crane, both for this poem and for the existence of James Franco.)

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