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Paul Klee - Farmer Garden Personified

I’ve long been a huge fan of Paul Klee’s paintings and e.e. cummings’ poetry, and for similar reasons: their playfulness and sense of excitement, as if “bursting with something very important and precise to say.,” as one critic writes of cummings’ work.

They dared to take their art in new and often jarring directions, playing with syntax and form, with color and composition. The reader/viewer is forced to see things in a new way. To question old ways of looking at the world.

Beneath the playfulness, something deeper is going on. Each bends toward the light.

“Everything passes, and what remains of former times, what remains of life, is the spiritual. In everything we do, the claim of the Absolute is unchanging.” – Paul Klee

“Love is the voice under all silences, the hope which has no opposite in fear; the strength so strong mere force is feebleness: the truth more first than sun, more last than star.” – e.e. cummings

A few favorites of each follows.

Paul Klee 'Sky Flowers Over the Yellow House' 1917 Watercolor 15 x 23 cm

Paul Klee Mit Grunen Stumpfen 1939

Spärlich Belaub ~ Paul Klee,1934

[in Just-]


in Just-
spring when the world is mud-
luscious the little
lame balloonman

whistles far and wee

and eddieandbill come
running from marbles and
piracies and it’s

when the world is puddle-wonderful

the queer
old balloonman whistles
far and wee
and bettyandisbel come dancing

from hop-scotch and jump-rope and




balloonMan whistles

The sirens of ships, 1917, by Paul Klee (Detail) Stuttgard, Staatgalerie (Art Gallery)

Paul Klee

paul klee art - Bing Images

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond

By E. E. Cummings, 1894 – 1962

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously)her first rose

or if your wish be to close me,i and
my life will shut very beautifully,suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility:whose texture
compels me with the colour of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain, has such small hands

Paul Klee

Paul Klee (Swiss:1879-1940), Landscape of the Past (Paysage du passé), 1918

Paul Klee