Monday, March 26, 2012

A PAIR OF SHOES (after Van Gogh)

Somewhere a bandoneon is sighing
where ivy runs and clings to porticos.
Twilight will bring a violin for duetting.
On a back terrace, two are conversing
beneath the jagged flight of a lone bat
echoing its memory of Dutch waterways
and vast fields of tulip colors in bloom.

And in the greater city, a flurry of spirits
going and coming, and touchng money.


Tonight something else will happen
silently in Amsterdam after hours,
in the modern Van Gogh Museum.

A monochrome of delving shades
come through the brushing eye
of one too seeing for distraction.
A pair of shoes still coming here
in the day and especially midnight
when no one is looking. Not shoes
nor any gesture for interpetation.

But a moment uncrusting layers
of mere paint, halting the dance
that jerks limbs, opening rumors
of what dreamed our Puppeteer.

Once and only once the world
or the hole that opens beneath
has come to hang over and over.
On a wall in modern Amsterdam.

Music coaxes away the silence.
But a presence of deeper drama
plunges and plunges back into it.

Van Gogh's "shoes" hold traces.

A Pair of Shoes
Vincent Van Gogh
oils, 1886

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