Wednesday, July 22, 2009

looking at a painting by Corot

They are dancing in the pale sunlight,

having arisen from black dreams of the fatherland,

dreams too dark for spirits.

They dance in the dawn fog as

great trees hover like providence,

watchful, rooted, spreading.

They dance a wild waltz of morning as

dew drips like wanton tears

from the grave grass.

They dance to a rhythm sprung

fresh in springtime, turning, spinning,

gliding in cool sunlight,


cold concrete walls and hard faces

near a sepulchral door, where

the shocked air chills as they pass;

soon the gas in the horror in the black

makes of them a floor of corpses,

a soft spread of death...

but now they are dancing

in the purgatory of a painting

that I might, in cosmic grief,

tear my garments

and cover my head with ashes

and gnash my teeth

for these, my lost nymphs.

1 comment:

  1. The juxtaposition of the two images is--mind-boggling. Well done.