What a life!


October 1967Includes references to: Prince Pince-Nez, cognizance of diary entries being misinterpreted, Susan Sontag’s new novel, “the child of the high seas,” Cherubino period, Caroline, “Loretta” #2, “Rabbit-Collage,” neighborhood children, collage burst, the new “Ravel-Rabbit” series, John Ashbery, and hallucinative dreaming.

(excerpt from Joseph Cornell Diaries, 1941-1973 at the Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art.)

Reading even the abstracts of Cornell’s diaries can take one many places. They lately brought me, like a monkey on a palanquin, here:

the vision of the Magi

detail, like the monkey, from Sassetta’s The Journey of the Magi, c. 1435. Tempera and gold on wood, 21,6 x 29,9 cm. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Today is John Ashbery’s 80th birthday. Happy birthday, JA – keep up the ‘hallucinative dreaming’!

…this is action, this not being sure, this careless
Preparing, sowing the seeds crooked in the furrow,
Making ready to forget, and always coming back
To the mooring of starting out, that day so long ago.

– from Soonest Mended


%d bloggers like this: