Monday, 24 October 2011


“Anyone who hasn't experienced the ecstasy of betrayal knows nothing about ecstasy at all.” - Jean Genet

Today’s image provided by Magpie Tales is by Lee Friedlander (born July 14, 1934). He is an American photographer and artist. In the 1960s and 70s, working primarily with 35mm cameras and black and white film, Friedlander evolved an influential and often imitated visual language of urban “social landscape” with many of the photographs including fragments of store-front reflections, structures framed by fences, posters and street-signs. His “America By Car” exhibition that showcased photographs taken from his car while driving around the USA, was held in the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City, September 4–November 28, 2010.

Another Song for the Road

It stretches up ahead, the road;
And like a length of string I follow,
On road map maze, (feeling hollow),
Your sudden parting to decode.
As car speeds on, cities rush by,
I try to sense your shade and find you;
See using only my heart’s eye
While my mind’s charts hidden view.

Where did you go? Why did you leave?
Unanswered questions, and an empty house.
My only fault was too much to believe
And endless words of love espouse.

The road like a silk ribbon unwinds
Having no end and no beginning;
Reflections, images of all kinds
My mind reels, the road is spinning.
As landscapes change, I leave behind
My past, my family and my friends;
To all, save my quest, I’m blind,
And if I’m wrong I’ll make amends…

I know I’ll never find you, but I drive,
I speed, I travel on, just to survive.
You left, I followed so I could live,
Hoping to find you, all to forgive.


  1. "my only fault was too much to believe "
    mine too. mine too...

    thanks Nicholas- thats a very good poem : )

  2. Your poem suits the images very well, Nicholas. I like the change in rhyme in the last stanza, which is deceptive in its optics!

  3. the road like a silk ribbon unwinds, no beginning no end...nice description and then you bring the feeling as well...very nice...

  4. You absolutely captured the essence of the photos .... though invisible, I was with you all the way.

  5. 'the ecstasy of betrayal' - I think I would change ecstasy to agony but maybe they are interlinked, like laughter and sorrow.
    Your poem displays well the hopeless urgency of unrequited or spurned love.

  6. I'd like to know who it was who left and who could cause the ecstasy of betrayal. The writer seems to have done some betraying him/herself for the sake of love.

  7. I enjoyed the contrast between the no-holds-barred cruelties of Genet and the gentler tones of your poem.

  8. I could feel the desperation and intensity of emotion in this piece. Nicely done.

  9. Intriguing poem. I spent some time reading about Jean Genet's Prisoner of Love. I wondered about a political connection in your poem but see that you do not label it as such. Still ... Enjoyed my time here.

  10. Great poem that really captures the feeling of the open road. My solution to all problems in my youth was to hit the road. Something about driving across vast spaces gave me the answers I did not know I was seeking - southwest America style meditation.

    Thanks also for the information about the photographer. Since vacation on the open road I have been rushing to catch up and did not google him. Great collage of images.

  11. You captured the ongoingness of the highway, the escape and that there is no escape from tears. Well done!!

  12. A very powerful piece of writing

  13. Running away or towards? Both seldom work...

  14. This one's just begging to be set to music. My favorite line? "Your sudden parting to decode".

  15. I did not know the history behind the photograph and am happy that I do now thanks to you.

    An amazing take but the line that shot out at me is 'The road like a silk ribbon unwinds' - a little like one's thoughts.