Tuesday, March 28, 2017


"Songs of Extinction" by Troy's Work Table.

Sidewalk chalk wash, sidewalk chalk, chalk pastels, and charcoal pencil on 12" x 12" concrete board.


"dodo bleating reedily to English-bred hounds," and "The last Victrola cranked to play in earnest. / The bright green town of my youth." —from "Songs of Extinction" by William Kupinse, as found in Fallow


The songs of extinction in this poem parallel the history of humanity. They move from the death throes of a mastodon to the current day. They move from the universal and humanity to the personal and individual.


The first five-line strophe is of animals of the past. The second four-line strophe is of animals on the verge of extinction. The third three-line strophe is of losses of human culture. The fourth (and final) two-line strophe is of a personal moment soon to be lost.

The movement on the page—full, longer lines to fewer, shorter lines—is an extinction itself.


Once again, I am struck by beauty in the midst of loss. This is an elegy that truly sings.

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