Friday, February 16, 2007

bon mots

This week all three of the judges had some good zingers.

Jonathan hilariously described his response to Goil/Carisa/Ryan's design as: "I'm in St. Tropez, I'm in St. Tropez, I'm in St. Tr -- Wait! I'm in Buffalo."

Team Tahiti's roofless design evoked a couple of the best quips, like Kelly's suggestion that they "include a bucket of zinc oxide." Margaret channelled some of Kelly's southern style and declared, "You're gonna get fried."

In this week's Observation, Margaret's literary stylings reached a new zenith this week. She moved away from the statement form and her language became more associative. I think it was the southern French connection: she became possessed by the the spirit of the troubadours.

The previous weeks observations had an Asian, zen-like style with her use of terse statements that appear simple but upon reflection they plumb profound depths. The first week's was a light koan spoken in a more off-hand modern language. The second week she became more poetic: her repetition reinforced her characteristic irony as well as her use of the haiku form.

This week Margaret celebrated the southern French landscape in poem that is both modern and traditional. Her simple questions -- romantic but almost child-like -- evoke the popular ballad form. The poem appears to be an aubade that celebrates the morning light.The aubade was popular with both the troubadors and as well as modernist poets such as Ezra Pound who greatly admired the troubadors. The second stanza's classic imagist style is very reminiscent of H.D. Indeed, her intense compaction and ironic undercurrent perfectly captures the spirit of the Americans in France a century ago. Can we read this as Margaret's preference for high modernism over the decor of French country?


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