Poems

Poems

Poems

Poems

Excerpt

The untimely death of Gene Derwood at an early age came as an unexpected shock to those who had known her and had watched the increasing success of her career in poetry and the arts. Her chosen means of expression were verse and painting and it is to these works that we must look to recapture a personality and a spirit that were unusual in modern times. Her innocence was so radical that it astonished one -- the full force of a purity of soul which had a certain fury, it was so strong. Her innocence was not child-like, although each day she seemed to touch the world anew, as if for the first time, in the manner of poets and painters; but she did not have the bedazzled quality of the artist-child, pulling back the webs of integument from experience that was merely natural, merely animal, merely instinctive. Hers was the innocence that sees the world in all its perfections and completions, after all experience, with a mature knowledge of the good and the evil that is in the universe.

Her gentle, quiet life, her interest in flowers and astronomy, belied the intensity of emotion which filled her work and the vision which was her special quality, as she sat on her terrace looking over the East River and the reaches of the Bay, with the miles of the City around her. Some thought her untouched by the world, but this could never be true: she dealt with the world on terms of exquisite tact and delicacy -- she was never withdrawn; merely considerate. She would give to a shopkeeper the same consideration she gave to her friends. All the world and all people were one to her: they were members of her family and were to be treated as such. Her work shares this unity of attitude -- rather than startling detail or pictorialization she brings a sense of cohesion, of a world at peace, at least in its ideal manifestations.

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