12 Poems Volume 1 Copyright ÂŠ 2016 Robert Rabinovitz ISBN 978-1-365-18342-3 Robert Rabinovitz, Associate Professor Design Parsons School of Design The New School University New York, New York United States of America Acknowledgements I would like to share my deep gratitude for the continued support from my friends, colleagues, the annual faculty research funding grants received by Parsons and The New School University and my talented and devoted student research assistants. Without help, all of this work would surely not be possible. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the prior written consent of the copyright owner.
twelve poems volume 1 robert rabinovitz
contents preface poems
1. it's a windy life 2. how long will I go 3. a deeper truth 4. monday morning 5. time waits for you in a different way 6. transitions 7. the dreams I have yesterday 8. dream 9. you were a lost soul 10. incomplete 11. the road is dark 12. these tears
After quitting my job as a industrial designer in 1988, I began once again my search for meaning. I wanted and needed to connect with others in a much deeper way expressing myself through art, poetry and music. In late August of 1990, I continued my journey as an artist, and entered my first year of graduate school at Cranbrook Academy of Art. I began to write and journal, record sounds, images and video, developing what would become the beginnings of my true creative voice. I have continued to write poetry and music, take photographs and film, building on a personal archive of self expression. Twenty two years later, while teaching at Parsons in NYC, I met Brendan Dunne, a student, who became my collaborator, friend, and designer on this first collection of poems. Brendan and I connected right from the start and this project of synthesizing my vast personal archive of poems and memories finally became a possibility. We met regularly in the Spring of 2012 at 2 West 13th Street in my office as he and I sifted through piles of old photographs and poems. As dates and numbers have always been a guiding structure on which to build my physical and conceptual ideas, we decided to use the actual dates and times when the poems were written as the main thread throughout this volume. Most grammatical and spelling errors are left as written and intended to help capture the true and honest spirit of the process of translation from original handwritten notes and notebooks to digital files and finally to this printed book in your hands. All photographs are original prints scanned specifically for this publication.
it’s a windy life ₁
itâ€™s a windy life so nice and tight so smooth and light so bright itâ€™s a dusty road a cotton field full of grass and coal so delicate and rough so smooth and hard
so walk lightly and do not wear shoes so your feet can mature to take the bruise
so wrestle with this and walk with that and move about and wiggle and listen and play
you moved and altered your state and upset your morning and at night you wake and feel the need to be who you really are
but were not all day out there in the world where you play the game that hurts so much you fall apart and tremble inside while you wear the mask of someone else but cannot know what you truly are till the pain is so that the night stillness speaks so gently to you and at once because you donâ€™t have the virtue now but allow it finally
while there is no choice but hear at that time when knowone is talking to you and you are not worrying about what you want or cannot have but that quiet moment when god speaks to you at that stillness that only you can know is real and true and honest and as black and white as the pimple on your cheak with the little black head that has been with you since you can remember.
and clear and right
It is as clear as that... as clear as the shape of your left thumb which is slightly smaller than your right because it did not get smashed by the basketball like a few other fingers on your handsâ€Ś its as clear as that like the smell of your tshirt after not showering all dayâ€Ś like the pattern that you always see when the sun blazes on your eyes on that hot summer day, the ring of light that reminds you of your eyeball and the light around it and the trail of particles that move gracefully down with perfect gravity
to the place and time where you blink again to bring it back up only to fall again and play with this you will till you are awakened by the necessity of your bodies desire to release itself of liquids that are much like if not exactly the same as the fluid that allows the particles in your eye to swim with grace and beauty and perfect form in organic euphoria.
Amen to all of this and more .
how long will I go â‚‚
how long will I go waiting to be true
how long can I go waiting to b true
how long can I go waiting to be true
how long can I wait till I say the truth
so how long will you go to a different truth
how long can you hold.
a deeper truth â‚ƒ
my home is here its inside my shoes â€“ the 26 homes all what ive known â€“ there were a few more when I was young not my choices, just the ones I got but my home is now, its in my shoes its often not where I think it is
my home is now its in my shoes its more like the ground I walk then a location or spot a sidewalk or road a path of earth a wet surface a snowed in lot home is a bit higher than that, its up a ways from my toes ive got about half way up is a heart thats not seen too well from where im at
nineteen home is here its now its true its â€“ with me now as I write to you home is here its inside you its where you say a word or two it s looking at your friend on the street its when you get something to eat itâ€™s a smile a hug a hello or goodbye a memory of when I cry the moment we touch its here and now its all we got home is here its now its true my beating heart for this moment or two â€“ so thank you for this and thank you for that the smile you gave has made a home at last.
monday morning â‚„
on the meaning of being on the being of seeing on the trees im singing for you im speaking on the meaning of being for you im listening for me im hearing for you im seeing more clearly now im feeling on the meaning of being on the meaing of seeing on the ground im laughing on the fly im dreaming on the way im living on the way im praying for all my friends who are in pain.
on the train im listening on the train im hearing on the plane im feeling high on you im watching on me im around and in time i m singing and in time im dreaming
in the light of this day im walking im listening to you im here but im not im with and im with out im into and im out im before and im behind
on this road im walking on this road im talking my way thru something I donâ€™t know on this road im talking my way around you on this road im dreaming and saying and being and doing and watching and seeing and being and really not listening and really not hearing and really not being and really just dying to
be with you.
time waits for you in a different way 5
time waits for you in a different way
not today not today -
in a different way in a different way
time waits and we do not
time waits and we do not
time waits and we do not
don’t worry bout me I got one don’t worry bout the law ive had one
don’t worry bout the time Ive been there
dont worry about the floor been on one
37 don’t worry bout the time I left one
don’t worry bout the girl had one
don’t worry bout the side
its all just transitions
ammunition for what can be
ammunition for where I want to be
cant stay in today
trying to get away.
the dreams I have yesterday
the dreams I have yesterday seem to drift away when I awake
the dreams I have yesterday
speak of my night before the dreams I had yesterday
seem to drift away
the dreams I had yesterday told the tale of last night
I want to stay asleep more to find out where we went.
somethings changing and im sure of it somethings changing and im sure of it
somethings been changing and its not just in my head
somethings changed they took out this thing wasnâ€™t supposed to be
it was in me now its gone
somethings changed thats inside of me im sure of it
somethings changed and its inside of me
lets go and see lets go and see
and im sure of it
you were a lost soul â‚‰
you were a lost soul
on a tired road
you came back to me
not sure if I can sleep seems the words donâ€™t rhyme but I can eat the love I give makes me weak the times like these im incomplete
the road is dark ₁₁
the road is dark
most of the time
it flickers at night
sometimes the road is dark at night
most of the time
the sparks they wonder in at night + if Iâ€™m lucky Iâ€™ll remember a few
+ write them down for me + you
+ if Iâ€™m lucky Iâ€™ll write them down for
me + you
the pond is dark at night most of the time
+ it flickers sometimes
these tears ₁₂
these tears these tears
they shed light and drop for you to reflect in me and you
they shed light and drop for you to reflect in me and you these tears to feel for you to let it be known that you and I can contiune to die that you and I can continue to die into the arms of love
drop drop drop
and reflect the light and love of hearts unite in light and love
art direction . design brendan dunne
poetry . photography . composition robert rabinovitz research assistant emily grigsby
12 Poems Volume 1 is the first in a collection of poems including text and photographs that span a lifetime of work as an artist and designer. Working collaboratively with my art and design students at Parsons School of Design in New York City, we selected the poems from over forty books of original hand written works beginning in 1990. This full color printed volume contains original scanned 35 mm color slides, color and black and white photographs and typographic elements to contribute to the overall context of the poems. The images also include many of my travels from Philadelphia to New Jersey, Colorado, San Francisco, Detroit, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Arizona, London, Paris and the many roads between to New York City.
typography lineto optimo
twelve poems volume 1 nÂ° copyright ÂŠ 2016 robert rabinovitz all rights reserved