3.20.2022 – imagination

imagination
must paint this – broken hearts can
not be photographed

This photograph is from the war in Ukraine where a memorial for the children killed in the war was created by empty strollers and car seats.

The text of the haiku comes from an article in the New York Times dated October 20, 1862.

The article is a review of the showing at Mathew Brady’s Studio of the first photographs of a battlefield made available to the general public, ever.

The reviewer wrote:

These is one side of the picture that the sun did not catch, one phase that has escaped photographic skill it is the background of widows and orphans, torn from the bosom of their natural protectors by the red remorseless hand of Battle, and thrown upon the brotherhood of God. Homes have been made desolate, and the light of life in thousands of hearts has been quenched forever. All of this desolation imagination must paint — broken hearts cannot be photographed.

This is one the of the photographs that was displayed at Brady’s Studio.

The reviewer stated: Mr. Brady has done something to bring home to us the terrible reality and earnestness of war. If he has not brought bodies and laid them in our dooryards and along the streets, he has done something very like it. At the door of his gallery hangs a little placard, “The Dead of Antietam.” Crowds of people are constantly going up the stairs; follow them, and you find them bending over photographic views of that fearful battle-field, taken immediately after the action. Of all objects of horror one would think the battle-field should stand preeminent, that it should bear away the palm of repulsiveness. But, on the contrary, there is a terrible fascination about it that draws one near these pictures, and makes him loth to leave them. You will see hushed, reverend groups standing around these weird copies of carnage, bending down to look in the pale faces of the dead, chained by the strange spell that dwells in dead men’s eyes. It seems somewhat singular that the same sun that looked down on the faces of the slain, blistering them, blotting out from the bodies all semblance to humanity, and hastening corruption, should have thus caught their features upon canvas, and given them perpetuity for ever. But so it is.

We don’t need to go the gallery on Broadway.

Jut turn on the TV.

Just open a device.

Seems like maybe we should have come up with a solution to this in 160 years.

But so it is.

1862.

Damn.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s