Is not love the origin of all creation?
That was all I was able to weave into the text of No Angel Hotel. Even though the Rouen paintings are not referred to by name, I would like to think those paintings somehow still cast their shadow in the book. Stanley Kunitz wrote about a poem that came to him while he was in his garden. "I dropped my hoe and ran into the house and started to write this poem, 'End of Summer'. It began as a celebration of wild geese. Eventually the geese flew out of the poem, but I like to think they left behind the sounds of their beating wings."
Monet's friend, the writer Georges Clemenceau, wrote an essay about the exhibition Monet held in 1895 of his Cathedral series: "In front of the twenty views of the building by Monet, one notices that Art . . . teaches us to watch, to perceive, to feel. The stone itself is transformed into an organic substance, and one can feel how it changes in the same way that a little moment of life is followed by another one."
Monet painted 31 canvases in his Cathedral series showing the shifting light on the front of the cathedral in sun, rain, at dawn, high noon and dusk. They are held in collections around the world, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC and the Musée d’Orsay in Paris. Even though they are variations on a theme, I can see the love in every one.
Stay tuned . . .