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“River Vessel”

Posted on • Words by • Art by

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Collaborators’ Q&A

Why did this piece of art resonate for you or seem like it would give you an avenue into writing about Japan’s earthquake and tsunami?
Poet Mason Schoen: The water in this photograph, although clear, contains a venomous quality to it. I was intrigued by the ripples and reflections… the stone’s imprint of a missing Japanese sun beneath the surface. It seemed as though the picture was taken after a radioactive rainfall. It’s a wonderfully compelling photo.

What do you think is the role of art in regards to real-world, real-time events? In other words, what makes a “successful” occasional or political piece of writing or art?
Poet Mason Schoen: I don’t know, really. Of course art should capture experience, perspective. In my opinion, successful poetry or prose leaves a reader feeling stranded and tethered at the same time. That’s what I shoot for, but often miss.

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