I am professor emeritus of English at Joliet Junior College and author of six full-length volumes of poetry. I have recently been working with public-domain paintings, photographs, and designs to construct original collages, which attempt to assemble discrete pieces of other artworks into new artistic wholes.
You think about the first time you saw an axe
You were in your father's workshop
You think about the first time you held an axe
An older man warned you not to cut off your own leg
You think about the first time you sharpened an axe
You held the sharpening stone in your fist
Then you read Aristotle
Poetry is an axe
Poetry is an axe?
Then you remembered
The first time you saw a poem
The first time you held a poem
The first time you sharpened a poem
The first time a poem sharpened you
I approach making collages as I approach writing poems working with juxtaposition, pattern, rhythm, novelty, balance, texture, collision, elegance and surprise. I take the same creative delight out of making collages as I do from writing poems. For me, the process of creation is uniform across all the arts. For me, the most lasting pleasure is the contemplation of art in all of its many costumes and disguises.
The only thing I have left
of my maternal grandfather
is a small hand-held mirror
made of ivory.
It sits in the upstairs
bedroom dresser drawer
like an only child.
I have yet to see myself in it.
Internet Archive: https://archive.org/details/@billyarrow