De barometer hapert / The barometer's stuck

During the holidays at the end of 2013 this fell in my mailbox.

A friendly gift by Jan H. Mysjkin and a great collection too.

I met Jan, while working on this a few years ago and this (one of my favourites of 2013) last year.

From this new collection 'ENZ., ENZ...' (uitgeverij De Contrabas, 2013) I made a video for 'De barometer hapert' (The barometer's stuck) as my first videopoem made in 2014.


The barometer’s stuck - Translation: John Irons

This morning I’ve regretted
the grey weather.

There’s a kind of permanent storm that never breaks
but always threatens to
like the spluttering of a damp squib.

* * *

The overhanging storm finally decided to fall – the sky was leaden and
seemed to approach the earth – flashes of lightning blasted dazzling
yellow holes – the thunder crashed from all sides at once – and the
water crackled and spattered until finally it came down in buckets.

* * *

A rainbow gave the signal of light.

* * *

The rain-soaked parrots, assuming
the black and bristly plumage
of old crows, clambered with beak and feet
to the very highest branches of the trees,
and sat there drying out while they ranted and raved like magpies.

I first did a reading and created a track around it;

For the video, I made another (read: less depressing) reading, but I kept the music.
The search for the right and fitting images whas a whole other game. I knew I wanted to work with images that would juxtapose with the words.
Create a friction on one hand, seem to open a passage towards the words on the other.
I tried to abstract and play with images from this classic by Hans Richter. Very nice abstact images I created from that one, but they didn't fit the poem. Next; this fitted the last lines of the poem...not the rest of it.
As it often happens, I found myself swimming through the Prelinger archives...I found the right ones ( a more 'classic approach'), played around with them, made them fit the pace and feel of the poem.

This works for me and I'm happy with the result.
Later on we might also make a French voice / German titles version. Meanwhile enjoy the result:

Poem: Jan H. Mysjkin
(from 'ENZ., ENZ...', uitgeverij De Contrabas, 2013)
Translation: John Irons
Concept, camera, editing, voice & music: Swoon
Footage: Prelinger Archives