Letters

SAVE THE GARDEN
Re: "Secret Garden Revisited" by Susan F. Edwards (April 30-May 6)

As a concerned citizen, USF St Petersburg professor, local business owner and arts patron, I'm glad a dialogue regarding the importance of the Kiley Garden has begun. I trust it will be seriously pursued by those in a position to consider its future.

In the mid-eighties, shortly after high school, I discovered the Garden. At the time I didn't have an educated understanding of art, but the Garden seemed to have a voice, a soul even. I would often go and simply walk and/or sit in the Garden marveling at how remarkable I found the space to be. The water that ran through all the small cavities throughout the landscape still captures my memory. This was a space I knew my out-of-town visitors could find nowhere else, so it was always a definite site for tourists to see.

Shortly after, I moved away. Upon my recent return, I visited the Garden and was saddened at its present state.

When Mr. Vinoly made his presentation to Tampa for the new museum, I was in attendance. It was not until shortly after the presentation that I realized the Garden was going to be demolished to make way for the new structure. In all honesty, I was so disappointed by the realization, my stomach hurt.

I remain confused as to why the Garden was not identified as a space that the new museum must incorporate.

It makes absolutely no sense to destroy one of the most striking examples of modern landscape architecture in the entire United States. When I discussed this situation with a friend who works for the U.S. Parks Service in Washington D.C., he wrote our demolition choice off as another example of "stupid Florida behavior" — another example of why we have a reputation as an area void of cultural understanding or appreciation. We should not allow this reputation to grow.

Furthermore, the museum not recognizing what a "carrot" it already has in the Garden is, at the very least, unsettling.

If the Garden is struck down in order to build the new museum I will be forced to boycott the Tampa Museum of Art and will encourage my friends to do the same.

—Dr. Lyman L. Dukes III
Assistant Professor, USF St Petersburg

MOVING WORDS
Re: Poetry in Motion by Susan F. Edwards (Apr 23-29)

I enjoyed the poems that were displayed in "Poetry in Motion." I especially liked ones written by Gianna Russo and Melissa Fair. They used novel methods of description and alliteration, among other fine techniques, to communicate ideas that are as real and immediate as across-the-street or a newspaper story.

The article shows that poetry is more than the archaic language with a fountain of adverbs and adjectives that makes many readers close the book forever when their last literature class ends.

—Raymond Niemi,
Via e-mail

FROM THE EDITOR:

A few issues back we did something stupid. We ran the same edition of "Red Meat" two weeks in a row.

And nobody noticed. Or at least no one complained, until one of our friends pointed it out a week or so later.

Which leads me to believe, nobody reads "Red Meat."

I never liked it myself, but when I arrived at the Planet I figured the strip had some sort of fan base somewhere — people who appreciate its sick skewering of "family values" and other shibboleths. Then I found out nobody on the staff reads it either, which is how we managed not to notice our mistake.

Are we missing something? Is anybody out there a fan of "Red Meat"?

Please let us know. We'll print the most interesting responses. And while you're at it, let us know if there are other underground comics you think might fill the space better. We may soon be in the market.

—Jim Harper

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