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  May 2004
volume 2 number 2
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  Jeni Bate
  Dave Nordling
  Laura Nye
  Jack Allen Shafer
 
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Jeni Bate May 2004
   

 

bio


    I paint the skies with peace and passion, because that's the way they paint me.
    "My medium is sky; I work in many different mediums to depict it: watercolor, acrylic, murals, oil, refractured watercolor/watercolor collage and mixtures of the above. Each offers different possibilities and have different strengths and restrictions. I also love working on different surfaces such as wood, metal or fiberglass.
    Ancient Romans regarded the hour before dawn and after sunset as holy hours separate from the rest of the day; we still connect with that feeling. Most people will enjoy a beautiful sunset, and those that rise early enough, a beautiful dawn. The sky is under-realized as the most important part of our world. We live on earth, but we live in sky. It is the only one of the four elements that has its own segment in every news report.
    The refractured watercolor medium is all transparent watercolor on watercolor paper. I paint each sky or water reflection sometimes up to five times, depending on the size I am working to. Each variant is in slightly different colors and because it is wet in wet it is always a little different each time. Then I cut them and collage back together. Some are framed under glass, but I mount some on panel and protect with layers of clear acrylic coating, so it doesn't need to be framed. For thin panels I will finish the edges in wraparound style with acrylic paint; for deeper panels I wrap the collage around the edges. This treatment not only moves the work into a mixed media format, but also allows the viewer to appreciate the texture.
    I intend and expect that my work will continue to grow by building on this method and incorporating other facets of my creativity into the work.
    My work is also viewable on my website, www.jenibate.com, or I can be contacted at info@jenibate.com."
Jeni Bate

   

 

The Love Yard

Here on the hill


Nowhere near a church


A tiny field with a tidy hedge,


Mown fine like a lawn


A graveyard.





Two rows


Bodies huddled together neatly


No more than four inches between.


The back row dated 50s, 60s,


Moss covered and hard to read;


The front row 70s through 90s,


Sharpened edges, clean writing


In Welsh and English:


Thomases, Morgans, Williamses,


Bevans and Bowens.


Ieuans, Glyndwrs, Bronwens, Margeds.





Beloved, In Loving Memory


Never forgotten.





People laid under these stones


Were not dead,


They were loved.





They were not planted here in these holes


Because they were as cold


As the stones over them


But because they were mourned,


They were missed,


They had left holes


In peoples lives


That no one could fill with warmth.





This is not a graveyard


This is a loveyard.





Here lies love.


Not just a body but


All the love we shared


With him or her


Put into the ground after them


Because love, unlike life


Doesnt just end there.





We put our love in with them


And stones that will last as long


As we know how to mark time


So we know,


Where they have gone


With our love


So we can follow after.


copyright 2004 Jeni Bate

   

 

Shakespearean Sonnett for Car Alarms

Do you notice car alarms any more? They have become background noise, partly because they go off at the littlest thing. A cat walks by and the alarm goes off. So we ignore them. So I thought, what can we do to car alarms to make people pay attention. Perhaps they should read poetry.






There's something that I really need to say!


A thief is trying to take this car away!


He'll break a window, rip ignition wires,


I know he'll try to make me squeal my tires.


He'll rev my engine, drive me very hard


Round corners, and through somebody's front yard.


I fear we'll drive the wrong way up the street,


Hit people who aren't hasty on their feet


And cops will come with red blue flashing lights


And corner me with sturdy black and whites


Who'll pit me so I slam into a wall


And then I won't feel very well at all!


And I can't see this thief! I have gone blind!


Oh - it's a gust of wind - oh = never mind-

copyright 2004 Jeni Bate

   

 

Ignition Point

I am the once-fertile prairie


dessicated beyond remembering rain


seeds scattered in hot desert winds


without knowing how


to be washed to earth


I am left waving dry stalks,


an ocean of brittle frailty


in an arid sea of air


flagellating the heat


under an empty blue heart.




You could light me with your smile, if you wanted


I am tinder, kindling laid ready,


waiting for that spark


dry these three winters


no hint of moisture


from clouds that passed by


looked pretty in the sunset


and sailed on,


ships leaving the night barren


and my waves, shining and dusty.





We are destiny in flame


waiting for a moment to ignite


all you have to do is


touch these flints together


your passion scorching these combustible lips


Sear me! Devour me!


Kiss me into inferno


Mormon rain


then drown me, wet me, feed me


let me grow again.


copyright 2004 Jeni Bate