parsing art – a response to my mother

by richibi

JohnSinger Sargent - "Mrs Edward L. Davis and Her Son Llivingston" (1890)

Mrs Edward L. Davis and Her Son Livingston (1890)

John Singer Sargent


about John Cage my mom writes,

“Hi Rick…..

When you called I had written the message but not sent it….I am trying again..

I cannot see people spending $100 or more and wasting almost 8 minutes of their time
to watch that crap…..

As for David Hockney…..well…..not my style….but for your sake I hope a lot of people like it…..

See you at 6 p.m……will give you enough time to digest what I said…..All my love….MOM….XXXX”,

most uncharacteristically, the last time
she used an epithet was when I landed
some Schönberg on her, which she
returned promptly and categorically,
that was some fifteen years ago, even
maybe twenty

bravo, Mom, for your robust opinion,
that’s what art’s about

but I’m reminded thereby that art is not
just for effetes, pretenders to arcane
insights, it’s for all of us, not getting it
is not necessarily our fault, sometimes
the artist is obtuse, even trite

what is true should be clear, I believe,
to everyone, which is why I ever adhere
to art, art cannot be anything other than
true, manifestly, else it falls apart

love you, mom


psst: if you’ve got quarters, please bring
some over tonight