So Much Depends Upon a Red Goose–Tribute to William Carlos Williams

Trautwein's Red Goose Shoes, St. Louis

I’m working in my garage/studio after school on a Tuesday afternoon.  Texas storms are brewing, but right now, the light is good and the breezes are pleasant.  My Voices and Visions documentary video of William Carlos Williams is playing as I post this, and has been playing over the past hour as I’ve painted on this piece.  Williams was a pediatrician, and his son was a podiatrist.  Hence I got this notion to paint this Red Goose Shoes sign, reminiscing with a grin about a WCW poem that I suppose will never erase from my consciousness:

so much depends

upon

a red wheel

barrow

glazed with rain

water

beside the white

chickens.

Every time I see something that is strikingly red and fading in time, this poem comes to the surface of my consciousness.  Hence the Red Goose Shoes sign.  There is one languishing in downtown Fort Worth near where I live.  Soon I’ll probably go and try to paint that one as well.

This is the defunct Trautwein’s Shoes at 5227 Gravois in Southwest St. Louis.  Last Christmas, as my wife and I poked around historic route 66 that threaded through St. Louis (I recently finished the Spencer’s Grill painting and posted it on this blog), I was struck by this vintage sign, shining brightly in the winter sun, and took a number of photos from several angles.  I have found some sensitive blogged comments about this store and would like to post the link for you if you’re interested in learning the background of this sad store:  http://www.beltstl.com/2005/07/independent-shoes/

So, as I listen to the lifestyle of William Carlos Williams, who always gathered ideas for visual poems as he traveled about his small town, I too wish to make a contribution remembering the sights I encounter as I make my daily rounds.

Thanks for reading.

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2 Responses to “So Much Depends Upon a Red Goose–Tribute to William Carlos Williams”

  1. lesliepaints Says:

    This reminds me so much of a town of my youth, Three Rivers, MI. It is virtually a ghost town now. Nice painting, David!

    Like

  2. davidtripp Says:

    Thank you, Leslie. I’ve never gotten as far north as Michigan, but hope to some day. I’ve really wanted to paint some of the industrial “waste lands” of small decaying northern towns. As I posted, there is a Red Goose Shoes sign in Sundance Square, downtown Fort Worth, but it’s in good restored shape, as is the building that supports it (though it is no longer a shoe store). These are the settings that draw me in, and there are so few of them here in the Southwest where I live (they’re in such a hurry to tear them down so they can build more convenience stores and parking lots).

    Thanks for your post.

    Like

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