Hope you all enjoy this, I wrote this after my first experience developing 35mm black and white film. I hope this is the right forum...
To a Negative (with apologies to Robert Burns)
Wee, slip’ry, curly, difficult beastie
O, what a panic's in my breastie
As I fumble in the dark
Juggling wi' an invisible reel
Will my leader hit the mark?
Or will I fail in my feel?
I'm truly sorry my thick fingers
Leave upon you prints and ringers
An’ as the reel drops in the tank
I shudder with worried compulsion
Images locked away, as in a bank
What happens next to my emulsion?
I doubt myself, as I meter the beaker
Could a man be any meeker?
I fret an’ flail with formulation
English, US, inch or milli-liter?
Developer first? Such trepidation!
In I pour – an accurate meter?
Thy wee clockface, I set it thrice
With nervous fingers cold as ice!
Mantra mutterin’, every minute, ten
I agitate, technique unproven
A tap on the sink, is that right? I ken?
I set down the tank, it sits, unmovin'
My minds eye sees gelatin wastin'
D-76: oh, the images it hastens!
As Kronos indicates an imminent stop
Panic-stricken, I watch the clock
To the sink, I trip and hop
Pourin’ the chemical out o’ my crock
That wee bit o' chemistry, ounces only
Poured out, but now my negative's lonely
It's time to cease, desist developin’
The beaker once more beckonin’
I fill it carefully, my brow wrinklin’
‘til tis reached the correct reckonin’
But negative, thou hast no voice
It's up to me to make the choice
What chemicals? When? and How?
To shake, to pour, to empty out
Again, sweat stains my furrow’d brow
My ignorance, technique doth flout!
An’ now, the steps, they accelerate
An’ in my head, doubts linger an’ prate
For Burns said the "schemes o' mice an' men"
"Gang aft a-gley"
"An' lea'e us nought but grief an' pain"
"For promised joy"
The time has come for final rinse
But my image still, to be viewed hence
Unbidden, I anticipate, with glee
The image I attempt to rear
"An' forward, tho' I canna see,"
"I guess an' fear!"
Ahh, we have a resident poet. Very nice...well written and I enjoyed it.
Like we say in LA, dude you rule
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Well, ok I came across this rap by John Elstad in "that" other site...so here goes:
The Large Format Rap
Hiking through the woods with my forty pound pack
I got my Arca, my Schneiders, and my Bogen on my back
Wanna capture the scene and get it all right
But it’s six more hours till I get the perfect light
So I pull out my Pentax and try to taking a reading
It’s the Zone system, baby, that my prints are needing
I measure the highlights, I measure the darks
I measure every spot in these g*d-d*mn parks
And them from behind, some sucka yells, “Halt!”
It’s the park five-oh and with me he’s finding fault
I’m just hangin’ out here with the bird the bees
And this upstart sucka thinks I’m shooting at trees
He’s says, “Drop your gun and do it real slow.”
I say, “You gotta be kidding. This thing costs a lot of dough.”
I try to explain. I say, “It’s just a meter.”
He says, “It looks like a shotgun without its Peter.”
So I throw down my spot, onto the dirt
And I know my wallet is gonna feel the hurt
I spent 23 hours on photo.net
Before I decided the Zone VI was the best bet
And now I’m stuck in these beautiful woods
With all my suddenly useless goods
I Guess I’ll have to find a way to enjoy the view
Without seeing it backwards and upside-down too
The poem is great, but that rap is hilarious! I had the microphone right next to my mouth while wearing baggy shorts and everything!
That was great! I could just see you guys with the baggies, backwards hats and giant shades. WORD!
Hmmm...I vote for the humor, but I liked the art as well.
Now, if the Ode to the Negative could be done with an Edgar Allen Poe feeling...
oh, that rap is good!
I like the Poe idea - that's what I say after every equipment purchase: