#15 decembrance 2017

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My friend Mikio who owns and runs the restaurant Omen Azen for whom we make pots published a book called Talk To A Stone. It is a beautiful object about Mikio's father, Yoji and his calligraphy. The book was designed by Stefan Sagmeister, an extremely well-known graphic designer. The driving design theme of the book was to print the calligraphy on translucent paper  which was then folded with reversed text printed on the opposite side of the sheet so that when folded the now readable text showed through the paper as if through a thin veil. For Mikio creating Talk To A Stone exhibited the Buddhist virtues of patience and perseverance. His restaurant is also a reflection of his commitment and approach. There are a few stones in a glass case as you enter the space. We gave him a few more last week as a reminder of long friendship, our joint trips to Maine, our fathers' love of making art and telling stories, and our daughter's future journeys. All are reflected through a veil of love and light.

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Go inside a stone
That would be my way.

Let somebody else become a dove
Or gnash with a tiger's tooth.
I am happy to be a stone.

From the outside the stone is a riddle:
No one knows how to answer it.
Yet within, it must be cool and quiet
Even though a cow steps on it full weight,
Even though a child throws it in a river,
The stone sinks, slow, unperturbed
To the river bottom
Where the fishes come to knock on it
And listen.

I have seen sparks fly out
When two stones are rubbed.
So perhaps it is not dark inside after all;
Perhaps there is a moon shining
From somewhere, as though behind a hill--
Just enough light to make out
The strange writings, the star charts
On the inner walls.

--From Selected Early Poems by Charles Simic. Copyright © 1999,

Charles Simic

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This page contains a single entry by Catherine White published on December 15, 2017 8:35 PM.

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