KyleStaver comments: "Transformation…Painting is transformation. It’s like alchemy of something. I remember being an art student and making light for the first time. Feeling like light was actually coming from the painting. How would you ever give that up after once discovering it? And then the different kinds of light. Before my light was very exclamatory. Bright color, loud light! And then it changed, and I didn’t want it screaming. I wanted to control what it expresses. And the very last painting that I did in the show was the , and when I was painting it, it came so close to being nothing, to just disappearing. So at what point could the light still be read as color? Some days I thought I just lost it completely, it would just disappear. All I had left were the little marks where the light sparked up. And then I would build the painting up again. I looked for the light that would just sort of hum."
I listen into this to hear how images and words could similarly capture light, transform, or disappear. How does a poem layer image and meaning in a word, in a line, as a painting might?
Staver's paintings try to capture a moment in the story where the transformation happens - see the painting of Daphne just as her father changes her into a tree to protect her from being raped. As Robert Hass says in Twentieth Century Pleasures, "“In stories…I suppose there is always a moment… when the image, the set of relationships that seem actually to reveal something about life, forms.” In poem making, what is that moment the poem needs to capture?