Soundless Music


He likes birds, she whispered
in recognition unaware of my

presence. Yes, he did, women
and birds and constellations.

Simple shapes, expansive canvass,
bold strokes tell a story. Forms

give birth to other forms, constantly
changing into something else.

Great movements in my mind
are provoked not from overflowing

forms, shapes baptized in gold,
salvation dogma. Any accident

will do. There I am given birth,
freedom in a moment that may

take years to form knowledge –
I am alive, I breathe. In eloquence

of silence, I – a woman and bird
and constellation – am happy.

He likes birds. Yes.




Author’s Note:


Woman Entranced by the Escape of Shooting Stars (Femme en transe par la fuite des étoiles filantes), 1969. Acrylic paint on canvas. Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía. © Successió Miró / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris 2014.

A trip to see the Joan Miro: Instinct & imagination exhibit at the Denver Art Museum offered up some surprises for me.

I was aware of Miro’s work but have never seen it in person. It was not an overwhelming exhibit giving too much. Much like Miro’s work, the exhibit attempted to give space and simplicity an opportunity to speak. And it did, along with some of his philosophy.

His journey later in life allowed simple shape, subject and color to change and grow in his painting and sculpture.

He quoted St. John of the Cross referring to the open expanse of what appeared to be a plain white canvass on some of his work calling it soundless music.

Art brought me once more on my journey to the importance of silence, listening, watching, and trusting change.

Her Beloved is silent music

In that nocturnal tranquility and silence and in knowledge of the divine light, the soul becomes aware of Wisdom’s wonderful harmony and sequence in the variety of her creatures and works. Each of them is endowed wíth a certain likeness of God and in its own way gives voice to what of God is in it. So creatures will be for the soul a harmonious symphony of sublime music surpassing all concerts and melodies of the world. Thus there ís in it the sweetness of music and the quietude of silence. AccordÍngly, she says that her Beloved is silent music because in the Beloved she knows and enjoys this symphony of spiritual music.

~ from SPIRITUAL CANTICLE by John of the Cross thanks to Gav Grissom

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