Friday, April 18, 2014

Seagram Building (Mies van der Rohe), Sonnet #173

What meant more to a strict thinker like Mies,
The building looked at or the looked out of?
The Seagram is what is, less what one sees,
A thing you might move through, but never love.
Was a man ever more ruled by the slide rule,
The right angle, and entrapped empty space?
Less may be more, but it's extremely cool,
Humorless, with a stern, unblinking face.
He's often pictured with a fat cigar,
A roundness, perhaps a form of penance
For abjuring the curvilinear,
Though for genius there is no repentance.
The Seagram is simple on a grand scale.
Sterile, and like dry ice, it can't go stale.

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