Sunday, August 11, 2013


Carl Sandburg Home and Museum in Flat Rock, North Carolina                           google
I met two famous people in college that the university brought in to speak to students.  Two artists I will never forget having the pleasure to hear and see in person: one was Joseph Albers, colorist and painter and the other was the poet Carl Sandburg.  
Carl Sandburg had a shock of hair parted and swept like a giant wave down to his ears, his face was serious and deeply thoughtful. When he read the words resonated in a deep part of ones soul..they seemed right and true.  
Not far from my Asheville studio is Flat Rock, North Carolina where Carl Sandburg's home which is now a museum.  His wife was a prize winning goat breeder.  She fed them and raised the babes in the house basement.  It was said that a few favorites had 

living room of Carl Sandburg's home
the run of the house. 
The house is much as if Sandburg had put his pipe down and walked out of the house one day, it has not changed.  It is personal and warm, books in piles and organized neatly, but books everywhere.  Sandburg also compiled an anthology of American Folk Songs.  In the summer months college students from around the country come and perform music from the collection.  There is also a wonderful petting zoo for children and children at heart.

from google image

A Tall Man
The mouth of this man is a gaunt strong mouth.
The head of this man is a gaunt strong head.

The jaws of this man are bone of the Rocky Mountains, the Appalachians.
The eyes of this man are chlorine of two sobbing oceans,
Foam, salt, green, wind, the changing unknown.
The neck of this man is pith of buffalo prairie, old longing and new beckoning of corn belt or cotton belt,
Either a proud Sequoia trunk of the wilderness
Or huddling lumber of a sawmill waiting to be a roof.

Brother mystery to man and mob mystery,
Brother cryptic to lifted cryptic hands,
He is night and abyss, he is white sky of sun, he is the head of the people.
The heart of him the red drops of the people,
The wish of him the steady gray-eagle crag-hunting flights of the people.

Humble dust of a wheel-worn road,
Slashed sod under the iron-shining plow,
These of service in him, these and many cities, many borders, many wrangles between Alaska and the Isthmus, between the Isthmus and the Horn, and east and west of Omaha, and east and west of Paris, Berlin, Petrograd.
The blood in his right wrist and the blood in his left wrist run with the right wrist wisdom of the many and the left wrist wisdom of the many.
It is the many he knows, the gaunt strong hunger of the many. 

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