The Sporting Life and Other Poems

by Gerald Locklin. ISBN: 1878116924. JVCBooks, 509 N. 12th Avenue, Arcadia, Florida 34266. 1999. 52 pages.

Book Review by

The Sporting Life and Other Poems collection is not located in any physical place. The poems are drawn from various magazines in which they first appeared. The majority of the poems are about painters and their works, like Edgar Degas’s At the Milliner’s, Stuart Davis’s Ebb Tide - Provincetown, and Richard Diebenkorn’s Untitled, 1992. In each poem Locklin writes about a painting, painter or both and allows the poem via the description to define an edge of his self, the self writing the poem. An introspective collection the poems paint a Locklin who is all an artist and draws his poetics and artistic philosophy from visual arts and the lives of artists. Perhaps the message is that art and artist are not at all separated. Since this might be the case, art is greater than the object it is. Art, the painting, the poem, is the artist, the poet. If true, and so it seems, then owning this book is more important than those $35.00 coffee table art books. This one must be there. On top of the pile. Let Aunt Willowmeana read on and maybe learn. Well, maybe. But you should, good reader, you should.