Monday, January 11, 2016

Eight Thoughts about Writing a Poem

Ordinary words, unfolding

Pure sound--eloquence, distortion

The gravitas of songs, the clean swing of a bat

Locked doors and a broken window

A mouse nest behind a dusty book

Forgotten dolls, gioconda smiles

News of the world, plain as dirt

A shape . . . brittle, shining, gone

The Unicorn Defends Itself, Netherlandish tapestry, c. 1495-1505, Metropolitan Museum of Art


Carlene said...

I am struck--quickened?--viscerally by the juxtaposition of the poem and its images and the photograph of the tapestry. In fact, I am almost physically hurt by the title of the artwork: The Unicorn Defends Itself. Maybe it's the best visual I've had for how I feel about the tenor of things on the national scale, how I feel about unwanted change, how I feel when I'm surrounded by unfairness and unfair people.

But I'm also grateful for this emotional jolt.

Dawn Potter said...

I can't exactly explain why the unicorn tapestry seemed to be an appropriate accompaniment to this list. I agree that the name of the tapestry is distressing. The piece hangs in the Cloisters, and standing in front of it is also distressing, though of course it is also very beautiful and compelling. Women's work, a certain sort of woman's, a certain sort of art that itself may have felt like imprisonment. The history of decorative needlework is a fraught one: privilege and pain.

Sheila said...

Loved. Printed. Keeping it handy.

Dawn Potter said...

Thanks, Sheila . . . though I'm sure you could come up with 10 more images on your own. The definitions are endless.