This weekend I caught up on the news – and this poem and illustration came to me:
The Little Brat
By Sue Clancy
Clueless Jack Horner
stood in a corner
eating a stolen pie
saying “Oh what a good boy am I!”
His classmates had cried.
His teacher had sighed.
But Jack, little Jack, didn’t ask “why?”
Instead he said “What a good boy am I!”
As he ate the pie…
As he stood in the corner…
Clueless: Jack Horner.
(Illustration, by Clancy, for the poem “The Little Brat” by Clancy.)
Delighted that my artist book “The Rabbit” has been published in its entirety in Issue 7 of Small Po[r]tions journal! You can see it directly here: https://smallportionsjournal.com/2017/02/10/sue-clancy-the-rabbit/
I think often about “artistic purpose” – and while, yes, I do get money for my work (I’m a professional, this is my full-time job) that’s not my only purpose for creating art. Today when I was thinking about this topic I had my tongue firmly planted in my cheek… and I did this poem and illustration.
Strummer – By Sue Clancy
Strummer played music for money,
Ribs, rolls, butter and honey
Or any other tasty dish
Like beef or lamb or fish
A scrambled egg would even do, if not too runny.
“Strummer” by Sue Clancy (brush and ink on handmade paper)
I’ve been busy working on art commissions – and some extra special “dog-drawing-for-Christmas” requests – none of which I can talk about in public ’cause, you know, they’re somebody’s present! So I took a very short time off from being one of Santa’s elves and did this short-narrative poem plus illustration practice:
Molly – By Sue Clancy –
Molly sat combing her hair
Tangles she had here and there
It took some might
But she set it a-right
Then got dressed and went dancing somewhere.
illustration and poem “Molly” by Sue Clancy
Doing my short narrative – poem plus illustration – practice again. Perhaps I should call it “dog drawing plus words”?
Ponder – By Sue Clancy –
There once was a dog named Ponder
Who was full of curiosity and wonder
“What’s it like in the lea?
or for people at sea?
Oh what is it like over yonder?”
Sketch and poem titled “Ponder” by Sue Clancy (drawing made with pen and ink)
Today’s short narrative practice… original poem and art/illustration to follow:
Danny Joe – By Sue Clancy
There was an old dog named Danny Joe
who played a lively banjo
and sang folk songs
about rights and wrongs
and all the things a body should know
art illustration to go with a poem by Sue Clancy called “Danny Joe” – the art is pen and ink on handmade paper
Here’s some more short narrative practice, or poetry practice, or words plus pictures practice or if you want to be really accurate you could call it “Sue’s playing around again”. Whatever you want to call it – here’s the poem and illustration:
Card Times by Sue Clancy
A sly old dog named Muffin
Sat on a cushion of stuffin’
While playing cards
And sweating hard
He said firmly “I aint bluffin’”
Card Times – words and illustration by Sue Clancy (the pen and ink on handmade paper artwork is titled “Aint Bluffin”)
Was contacted this morning by one of my gallery owners, Barney, of Downtown Art & Frame, in Oklahoma to tell me that my work “Lettuce Peas” had sold! This work was a highly experimental piece, different from the “typical” work I do. For this project I worked with Judy Sullens, a writer, and created this words+art piece inspired by and based on her word-play. Judy’s original poem was titled “Gardener’s Prayer”. I took Judy’s words and created an original cut-paper illustration in my style and wrote out her poem by hand using pen and ink calligraphy.
Technically this piece is an original “broadside” as it would be called in the book-arts world. And normally I might have submitted it for exhibit in a book-arts kind of gallery like the 23 Sandy Gallery. But, Barney, who runs a frame-shop-gallery in Oklahoma saw the piece in my studio here on the West Coast, liked it and wanted to frame it and exhibit it along with the other artwork of mine he was selecting for delivery to his gallery.
I do my best to keep my gallery-owners happy so I agreed. All the art he requested got shipped – including “Gardener’s Prayer”. He was happy. I was happy. Judy was happy. Then life went on.
When he told me today that the work had sold he also said of this piece “it’s a gem”. He talked of how much attention this particular piece had gotten, how the client who ended up buying it had come to ‘visit’ it multiple times before buying. He went on to say that he thought it might be a good idea for me to do more such things, maybe make a book of such poetic-artistic-meditations-on-daily-life.
So now I’m thinking about doing that. Over the many years I’ve worked with Barney he’s had a number of great suggestions for my art/career… so I take his suggestions seriously. And I think Judy will play poetry+art again with me … and I write poems sometimes myself… and I’m also flirting with thoughts of collecting some other poet/writers very short thoughts (ideally word-play) about some aspect of daily life.
My question is how to go about it? Must ruminate more on this topic… Please share your comment/thoughts too.
Anyway here is the “Gardener’s Prayer”:
Poem by Judy Sullens. Art (cut handmade paper) and Calligraphy by Sue Clancy.
Practicing “narrative” additions to my “visual story” thing – and this time I illustrated a short short-poem-story-like-substance. Please wash your hands after handling (ahem, wink) this one titled:
Haste Accounting by Sue Clancy
An accountant was working in Haste
who added his numbers with paste
saying “If these sums are wrong
then I’ll sing you a song
but there’s simply no accounting for taste.”
illustration for “Haste Accounting” a poem written and illustrated by Sue Clancy
Here’s a new “story poem” with an illustration – both by me. A little silliness to brighten your day. And yes, I’m thinking “Wouldn’t it be fun someday to make a book full of my short silly somethings and artwork?” So here’s my latest effort toward my dream. Please comment, share or buy me a pizza. (just kidding about that last one) Thanks in advance!
Fish School By Sue Clancy
“In a few days it’s back to school.”
sighed Tiny Tuna O’Toole
“To learn reeling and writhing,
nosing and diving,
with tests in Fisherman’s Fool.”