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Mobile Photography & Art Saturday Poetry – ‘On Floriography’ by Karen An-Hwei Lee

This weeks Saturday Poetry, matched with mobile photography/art is entitled ‘On Floriography’ by Karen An-Hwei Lee.  “This poem explores the ancient practice of floriography, the coded language of flowers, as a way to express human love through the use of fragrance, colors, and vivid symbolism. By elucidating the phenomenon of florescence alongside the art of floral arrangement, the poem encourages readers to extract poetry and beauty out of a dystopic world”, explained Lee. She holds an MFA from Brown University and a PhD from the University of California, Berkeley. A poet, novelist, and translator, Lee is the author of three books of poetry: Phyla of Joy (Tupelo Press, 2012), Ardor (Tupelo Press, 2008), and In Media Res (Sarabande Books, 2004), winner of the Norma Faber First Book Award and the Kathryn A. Morton Prize. Her most recent publication is the novel The Maze of Transparencies (Ellipsis, 2019). She works in university administration at Point Loma Nazarene University, and teaches in the low-residency MFA Program at Seattle Pacific University. Lee lives in San Diego, California.

I have matched this image by @solaristika44 – Marina Kozlova with this poem. You can view more of her work here.

If you would like to be featured in our Saturday Poetry section, please ensure you include the hashtag #theappwhisperer to any images posted to Instagram. This will mean we will be able to consider it.

To view the others we have published in this section, go here.


On Floriography’ by Karen An-Hwei Lee

If you often find yourself at a loss for words

or don’t know what to say to those you love,

just extract poetry out of poverty, this dystopia

                            of civilization rendered fragrant,

             blossoming onto star-blue fields of loosestrife,

heady spools of spike lavender, of edible clover

                            beckoning to say without bruising

a jot of dog’s tooth violet, a nib of larkspur notes,

                        or the day’s perfumed reports of indigo

                                in the gloaming—

              what to say to those

                           whom you love in this world?

Use floriography, or as the flower-sellers put it,

Say it with flowers.

—Indigo, larkspur, star-blue, my dear.

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Joanne Carter, creator of the world’s most popular mobile photography and art website—— TheAppWhisperer platform has been a pivotal cyberspace for mobile artists of all abilities to learn about, to explore, to celebrate and to share mobile artworks. Joanne’s compassion, inclusivity, and humility are hallmarks in all that she does, and is particularly evident in the platform she has built. In her words, “We all have the potential to remove ourselves from the centre of any circle and to expand a sphere of compassion outward; to include everyone interested in mobile art, ensuring every artist is within reach”, she has said. Promotion of mobile artists and the art form as a primary medium in today’s art world, has become her life’s focus. She has presented lectures bolstering mobile artists and their art from as far away as the Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea to closer to her home in the UK at Focus on Imaging. Her experience as a jurist for mobile art competitions includes: Portugal, Canada, US, S Korea, UK and Italy. And her travels pioneering the breadth of mobile art includes key events in: Frankfurt, Naples, Amalfi Coast, Paris, Brazil, London. Pioneering the world’s first mobile art online gallery - has extended her reach even further, shipping from London, UK to clients in the US, Europe and The Far East to a global group of collectors looking for exclusive art to hang in their homes and offices. The online gallery specialises in prints for discerning collectors of unique, previously unseen signed limited edition art. Her journey towards becoming The App Whisperer, includes (but is not limited to) working for a paparazzi photo agency for several years and as a deputy editor for a photo print magazine. Her own freelance photographic journalistic work is also widely acclaimed. She has been published extensively both within the UK and the US in national and international titles. These include The Times, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Popular Photography & Imaging, dpreview, NikonPro, Which? and more recently with the BBC as a Contributor, Columnist at Vogue Italia and Contributing Editor at LensCulture. Her professional photography has also been widely exhibited throughout Europe, including Italy, Portugal and the UK. She is currently writing several books, all related to mobile art and is always open to requests for new commissions for either writing or photography projects or a combination of both. Please contact her at: [email protected]