Louisiana Poetry for a list of literary groups, reading series, and other poetry related goodies. And here is a discussion of Walt Whitman's poem, "I Saw in Louisiana a Live Oak Growing."
Louisiana poet laureate Darrell Bourque writes ekphrastic poetry. At this site, you'll find poems in response to works by Vermeer, Durer and de Hooch.
But in the poem "My Father at Grand Isle," it's a family photograph Bourque parses with the eye of an art-lover.
MY FATHER AT GRAND ISLE
by Darrell Bourque
Whoever took this picture of my father loved him.
He is a boy still, but barely.He has separated himself
from all others he came here with at this watery retreat
his mother takes her family and friends and her priest
to in the summers.That is, everyone except this one
who gazes up at him leaning into the world, held back
by the railings on the balcony. Everything behind him
is a blur so that we cannot see details in the structures.
What we can see though are the edges of the wide gulf,
placidity itself objectified in this captured light. It ismostly this broad blankness this boy will grow toward.
Read the rest of the poem here.
Writing Prompt: "My Father at Grand Isle" begins with an observer's eye -- listing the things the poet sees in a photograph. The shift happens when Bourque steps out of the photo and into the future.
Begin with a family photograph, a familiar one. Write what you see with an outsider's eye first. What details had you overlooked? Then, write something you know that the photograph doesn't.
We're racing off to Indiana. See you there.