This month we feature a story from award-winning playwright Evan Guilford-Blake. “My Father’s Robe” is a touching tale of family and the passage of time, and features a fantastic illustration from our staff artist Elwira Pawlikowska.
My mother leans against the doorway. She is wearing my father’s steel gray terrycloth robe. Dad was tall and the robe’s bulk envelops her tiny frame: Both sleeves are rolled up, one past her wrist, the other to her elbow. Beneath it, she has on lime green slacks, a white short-sleeve sweater with mother-of-pearl buttons and her favorite slippers, the pink ones with bunny faces that Karina and Kendra, Kieran and Krista’s twins, gave her for her seventy-ninth birthday. The robe is the same one Dad wore on their honeymoon sixty-two years ago. Amazingly, it’s still intact, although the cuffs and pockets are frayed, so is the belt, but she wears it constantly. My mother is eighty-one and my father has been dead for eleven years.
Starry Night over the Rhone, by Vincent van Gogh
My restless blood now lies a-quiver,
Knowing that always, exquisitely,
This April twilight on the river
Stirs anguish in the heart of me.
For the fast world in that rare glimmer
Puts on the witchery of a dream,
The straight grey buildings, richly dimmer,
The fiery windows, and the stream
With willows leaning quietly over,
The still ecstatic fading skies…
Sudden Storm, by Paul Nash
If I should die, think only this of me:
That there’s some corner of a foreign field
That is for ever England. There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England’s, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home.
And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
Wire, by Paul Nash
These hearts were woven of human joys and cares,
Washed marvellously with sorrow, swift to mirth.
The years had given them kindness. Dawn was theirs,
And sunset, and the colours of the earth.
These had seen movement, and heard music; known
Slumber and waking; loved; gone proudly friended;
Felt the quick stir of wonder; sat alone;
This week we feature “Mindscape”, a surreal pinscreen animation by Jacques Drouin, with music by Denis Larochelle. Without words, the short film tells the tale of an artist who becomes very engrossed in his work. Be sure to watch the film below the jump!
We Are Making a New World, by Paul Nash
Blow out, you bugles, over the rich Dead!
There’s none of these so lonely and poor of old,
But, dying, has made us rarer gifts than gold.
These laid the world away; poured out the red
Sweet wine of youth; gave up the years to be
Of work and joy, and that unhoped serene,
That men call age; and those who would have been,
Their sons, they gave, their immortality.
Blow, bugles, blow! They brought us, for our dearth,