Monday, February 14, 2011

Animated Film and Poetry by Andrea Dorfman

I am really getting into video narratives and video poetry. I found a few really great gems on You Tube lately. Last week, I shared some poetry by Billy Collins. I was remiss in not mentioning that he served as Poet Laureate for the State of New York from 2004 until 2006. Collins read his poem The Names at a special joint session of the United States Congress on September 6, 2002, held to remember the victims of the 9/11 attacks.  I am now waiting for a book of his poems to arrive from Amazon.

This week, I want to share with you some special videos by someone I found on You Tube - Andrea Dorfman.

Andrea Dorfman is a artist and film maker who is with the National Film Board living in Nova Scotia, on the eastern coast of Canada. She is starting to build quite a nice list of credits as you can see from the Cinematography section of her web site, where she has listed 8 shorts and 2 feature films.  Go here for a full filmography.

I found this first video to be very inspirational and I hope you do too.   It is an animated film about life and love.  It is only in a small way about love. It also touches themes of  fear, busy lives ("Busy is a religion"), happiness, making mistakes, being an artist, riding a bicycle, beauty and hindsight.  There are a lot of thoughts tucked into this little 4 1/2 minute short.

I chose this video to feature today because of the section about love.  It is Valentines day today - a time when folks who are "paired", have their smiley day and so somehow it seemed appropriate to lead with something more real and less traditional about love for us singles.  The section on love perfectly fits my sentiment.  I have transcribed a small part of the lyrics from that section, so you can appreciate what I mean. It is for those of us who have loved and lost, loved and thrown away, or just plain fallen out of love but at the end of it all still have hopes to fall in love again.  

From the short "There's a Flower in My Pedal"
by Andrea Dorfman

I play this song over and over and over because
At the time I was sad and terribly in love.
Long after it made me happy to listen and remember
About a time I thought I was in a never ender.
People disappoint me and leave me broken down
That is the price we pay for love and I wear it like a crown.
I lived my life so far than ever I could
It is a gift to feel so much
It is worth taking the bad with the good.

There's a Flower in My Pedal
by Andrea Dorfman

How To Be Alone
Film by Andrea Dorfman
Poetry by Tanya Davis

I can't begin to explain all the things which I love about both the video and poem.  The poem itself was written by Tanya Davis - a friend of Andrea Dorfman.  Personally, I have learned to be happy alone, but I know folks who have not.  For those folk, this short provides a wonderful step by step approach to learning to live life fully as a single person.  It would be very inspirational, I think, for someone who is recently single after a long marriage.

I didn't so much need a course in how to be single - I have been taking baby steps and even big leaps through the happily alone space for some time.  I have taken week long vacations to resort destinations on my own and am planning a travel sabbatical on my own next year.  Even so, I found the video inspirational and full of little gems.  Having listened to it many times, there are a few lines which grabbed me.

  • "Go to an unfamiliar city, roam the streets, there's always statues to talk to " - this section features a statue of Winston Churchill which sits in the area of the Toronto City Hall near Osgoode Hall which I have walked by hundreds of times.  As a women alone, it is really easy to go look at public art displays without feeling odd to be alone.  I have wandered the Toronto streets quite a bit admiring our public art (check out my Toronto Art Blogs) and enjoy these outings a lot.

  •  "lonely is a freedom that breaths easy and weightless and lonely is healing if you make it... Cuz if you're happy in your head then solitude is blessed and alone is okay." Isn't this a wonderful line?  I have blogged recently about my "Fortress of Solitude". I say no more.

For more information about "How To Be Alone", including the full text of the poem, go to Tanya's web site.

I noticed as I finished this blog and was searching out some links to add, that the  Toronto Sun Newspaper had a Valentine's Day column which mentioned Tanya Davis's poem How to be Alone.
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1 comment:

  1. I think it is neat that you are out and about, Peggy, exploring, and looking for innovative and experimental forms of art.

    I guess I live so much in the past that I usually walk right by the contemporary searching for a doorway into yesterday.

    Maybe, I will take a look at this ....


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