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Artist's Statement

My “poetry in the everyday” project began with my desire to do an installation of a poem I really like and thought others would enjoy as well. The poem that I chose was Lord Byron’s “She Walks in Beauty,” because it is a beautiful poem in which the speaker offers sincere, flattering praise of his beloved. Since this poem was one whose admiring, love-struck tone made me melt, I felt that it would do the same to other females at John Carroll.
I decided to install this poem on the mirrors in ten different women’s restrooms on campus. In this location, the installation could offer a little self-esteem boost for the John Carroll ladies, as the poem praises a “she” who could be, with a little imagination, any one of the women who used the restroom and looked in the mirror. I installed a portion of the poem each day for a week, and the poem still hangs in the ten bathrooms that I “installed” it in across campus. This considered, I think that the installations had a great impact on the ladies of JCU. I am sure this is a project that I will never forget and I am very glad to have gotten the opportunity to complete it.

Feedback on "She Walks in Beauty"

On Wednesday, as I was washing my hands next to a faculty member whom I do not know, I asked what was on the mirror and she commented on the fact that every day a new part of this written work was being put up, and how she thought it was fun to see it grow each day and also that it was a very nice “confidence booster” as it highly praised the woman whom it was written about.

I was so excited to learn that people, or at least this faculty member, were taking note of the poem and its growth from day to day, as well as its self-esteem boosting tone.
On Thursday, I got more positive feedback. This feedback came from a fellow member of the cross country team, upon using the restroom in the varsity center before practice. She commented on how nice it was to read the pieces of paper on the mirror, and how good it made her feel.
Finally, on Friday, I was caught in the act of installing the final segment of the poem in the third floor restroom of the library. For most of the week, I managed to get in, install my segment, and get out of the restroom without being seen, but on my second to last installation, one of the females on the cleaning staff came into the bathroom. She asked if I was the one putting up all these pieces of writing across campus and commented on how big of an impact it had on her to see these installments in all the various bathrooms. She said it was a great way to make my voice heard, then asked some questions on the poem itself.


"She Walks in Beauty " Lord Byron

Megan Lutz

SHE walks in beauty, like the night  
  Of cloudless climes and starry skies;  
And all that 's best of dark and bright  
  Meet in her aspect and her eyes:  

Thus mellow'd to that tender light          5
  Which heaven to gaudy day denies.  
One shade the more, one ray the less,  
  Had half impair'd the nameless grace  
Which waves in every raven tress,  
Or softly lightens o'er her face;   10
Where thoughts serenely sweet express  
  How pure, how dear their dwelling-place.  
And on that cheek, and o'er that brow,  
  So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,  
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,   15
But tell of days in goodness spent,  
A mind at peace with all below,  
  A heart whose love is innocent!