Nephew’s Tile and a Poem

Nephew Mark's Tile

Six-inch tile unfired, designed by nephew Mark

My Nephew Mark in Chicago designed this toucan bird tile. It’s his third design, the previous two were a cheeta and an american bison. During my arts and crafts shows he draws something and I make a tile from it. My next post will be of the glazed version.

I wrote a poem in response to Emily Dickenson’s “Slant of Light”. My dad was born in Amhearst Massachusetts and my aunt use to walk by Dickenson’s house. I didn’t know it, but after reading my grandfather’s family history, I found out I have some puritan blood mixed in with my native Alaskan blood. I’ll give her poem first than mine below it:

There’s a certain Slant of light
Winter Afternoons–
That oppresses, like the Heft
Of Cathedral Tunes–

Heavenly Hurt, it gives us–
We can find no scar,
But internal difference,
Where the Meanings, are–

None may teach it–Any–
‘Tis the Seal Despair–
An imperial affliction
Sent us of the Air–

When it comes, the Landscape listens–
Shadows–hold their breath–
When it goes, ’tis like the Distance
on the look of Death–

Now my version (reaction?)

When Emily spoke of light
of Amherst Winters
Our oppression would be twice
a New Englanders

Frontier frownies, we paste on–
With yes, frost bite black
By third degree down in depth,
Whence our undies, back–

Molly Hootch says teach it–
That our seals have hair–
And a bad sea food addiction
Stenching up the Air–

Only then, White Alice listened–
In shrouds of Moose breath–
Only now, ’tis the NSA
And we look like Meth–

Ok, I’m back in 4th grade, wanting to make people laugh. Anyway, for clarification, Molly Hootch brought a lawsuit against the state so that indigenous students wouldn’t have to leave their villages to go to school out of state. And “White Alice” was the name for the old northern radar stations that were part of the cold war.

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About Ed Mighell

Former civil engineer turned artist. Received BFA in printmaking. I developed a nice tile clay body using the glacial clay from the inlet next to Anchorage. I sell at the Anchorage weekend market, Anchorage Museum, Alaska Native Heritage Center, and Alaska Native Arts Foundation. Also started going outside to large arts and crafts fares.
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2 Responses to Nephew’s Tile and a Poem

  1. Pete says:

    There is something about the tile?? At first I just saw the bird and clicked away from the posting but my mind would not leave it alone and I came back to just say looking at it now it is not a tile but a piece of art..thank you

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