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The Process & Bios

Notes on "My Unified Theory of Everything"
Ron Kostar + Judith McNally

The poem was written by Judith McNally and the image was constructed by Ron Kostar, both of Roosevelt, New Jersey.

Judith McNally:
The way I remember the process, Ron suggested a collaboration and would I be interested?
Then he chose a poem of mine and matched it with one of his collages. I didn't think the image was a good match. Whereupon he emailed 41 other collages, and I chose the one I thought matched best. We've collaborated before, with Ron reading one of his poems and myself on piano improvisation. This is our first word/image collaboration, a happy two-way street.

Ron Kostar:
In the old days, in other words ten years ago, when I used to get what I thought was a good idea or if I wrote a poem or captured an image, I'd get up from my chair and run upstairs and show it or tell it to somebody. But those days are long gone. Now when my Muse strikes I sometimes go online and shoot off an e-mail, many to my friend and fellow poet and collaborator Judith McNally.

In this instance, I shot off the image "Proud Bird " and Judith sent back her wonderful poem "Everything..." , and the rest, as they say, is history. Or, come to think of it, did the order of the transaction take place the other way around? I'm not sure. Collaborating can be like cutting a log with one of those long old, two-person saws, usually it's difficult to tell who leads and who follows.



Judith McNally, retired from teaching Creative Writing in the New York and Princeton areas, has published a novel, Jigsaw (Macmillan, 1981) and is the recipient of a New Jersey State Council on the Arts Prose Fellowship. Her first play, Birdland, about Charlie Parker, was optioned by the New Federal Theatre, NYC. Her poems and short dialogues (micro-logues) have been published in US1 Worksheets, and read widely in the New York and Princeton areas. Judith currently plays flute
for the Dance Improv Live! band. She resides in Roosevelt, NJ.

Ron Kostar lives in the historic WPA town of Roosevelt, NJ. He has been a professor but now retires in the woods and plays the clarinet in The Hot Taters, a Dixieland band.
He reads and performs regularly and has published poems in several small magazines including US 1, City Magazine, For Here or to Go, In the Mail, The Princeton Review and
The Kelsey Review, and he has shown his collages and other images in a number of Group and Collaborative Art Shows.


back to the collaboration


. .BluePrintReview - issue 27 - Synergetic Transformations