Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Poe: A Dream Procession

A Celebration For The Existence Of The Divine Joke, 14.5 X 17", copr William Cook, 1982

This scene looks across a parking lot from the University Of Maryland Hospital, to the 
intersection of Fayette and Greene. The buildings are accurate enough to mention 
that the church in the upper right is Westminster Church, site of the grave of 
Edgar Allen Poe.  This view is no longer possible because they built a
building in the lot. Anyway, the significance of all this is that 
I must have snapped this shot while parked next to the 
Hospital, waiting for my wife to get off work.

I may have known about the Poe thing, hence the snapshot. And many moons later, 
I thought this would make a great backdrop for the procession idea I had for this piece.
I mean what a cool conjunction of weirdness.  Even without the Poe thing the buildings 
are creepy enough, but Edgar was icing on the cake. 

This was all reminiscent of a dream I once had of a procession of weirdos, celebrating
something I didn't understand, but I had better get away from.  But I couldn't leave--too 
wicked and wonderful.  They carried shields with this funny emblem, and had 
tassels with sixes embroidered, there were signs, banners, flags--and 
throngs of onlookers all worked up witnessing their holy "priesthood"
 marching along.  

They're celebrating a God who, among his other duties ultimately 
tells the Divine Joke.  The punchline is that there's no joke, he will 
roast you over the coals throughout all eternity if you make a mistake.
How I hoped this wasn't so.

Then I woke up.  



hw (hallie) farber said...

Those PK dreams--they lurk. Your drawings remind me of a master like Rembrandt; I'm gad you brought them out.

William Cook said...

You nailed it. It's a PK dream, and this is a typical Sunday morning with my dad leading the procession, and a nine year old me utterly creeped out by all the hocus pocus. Good thinking, Hallie. Woo. Great comment!

John Brisson said...

This is now my favorite. So many things to catch the eye.


William Cook said...

That composition does seem to be loaded now that you mention it. Glad you like it--makes my day. Best.