Hidden Water, From the Frank Stanford Archives

Oh, hi there! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and are stuffed to the max with peace, harmony, good cheer, and excellent food.

I ended up reading some poetry by Frank Stanford. Have you heard of him? No? Well, Third Man Books (Jack White- if you have heard “Seven Nation Army”, you know who he is) wants you to know about him. They have put together this fine collection of Stanford’s archived work. It is a collection not seen by many, including notebook entries, drafts, letters etc.

You gather pretty quickly that Stanford is obsessed with the moon. So I felt pretty ingenious reading this the night of the full moon. I am not sure if I gained any further insights by doing this, but I did find it best to read the poems with one eye open/half reading them/slightly distracted/when slightly delirious with exhaustion. Basically, I think if you spend too much time trying to dig for deeper meaning in each line and phrase, you will lose the rhythm, motion, and dream-like atmosphere Stanford creates.

The poems felt a lot like observing someone else’s kooky lucid dreams or as if polaroids of beautiful, interesting, and at times grotesque images were thrown at your head, one by one, over and over and over. Sure, you can try and find a pattern, or rhyme, or reason, but there may not be one. To cliche it up, “it’s the journey, not the destination”. If you want to kill yourself trying to find the key to the riddle, where there may not actually be a key, so be it. It’s your dime. It’s your time. I’ll take mine and that is fine.

Music Corner:

  1. “Pink Moon”– Nick Drake- The moon and also taking a moment for lives that ended too early.
  2. “Hot Lips”The Cotton Pickers- Stanford grew up in the south and this reflects in his writing. He was also genetically blessed with gorgeous lips. Fact.

Books Read: 11




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