jillypoet: mom trying to write

Each day I wish I had invented waterproof sticky notes (for shower inspiration) or pen-friendly diapers to get down all my quirky thoughts that I am sure are relevant and publishable. And so God (actually another writer-mommy) sent me The Blog.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

A Still-life Speaks

As soon as I read the prompt for this week's Poetry Thursday post, I knew I had a blue poem. Cheating, I know. I should write, write, write a new blue poem! But this one was near and dear to my heart long ago when I wrote it. I was a young feminist, fresh out of grad school. Ah, memories... I actually had a plan to create an entire book of poems based on Renoir's women. Maybe it's already been done. The irony is, now I teach little kids, young artists, how to spackle themselves into being. Although, there is definitely NO spackle involved. And NO oil. Good God! Too messy! Anyway, here it is. Thanks for reading!

Therese Berard, Oil on Canvas: A Still-life Speaks

I am painted in darkest blue.
I am Therese Berard.
I am an oil on canvas.

I am one of Renoir's women.
His name in the corner, demure.
My face in front, displayed.

We hang together from
museum walls, these women
and I. Still-lives, suspended.

His hands framed us.
Artist.
Art.

Creator.
Created. His hands
and a whorl of midnight

oils bathe my portrait,
my presence, binding me to
the page. Oil on canvas.

It seals me. I am a royal study.
Navy brush strokes fold
over me, catch my shoulders, press

me onto the page. They
stain the creases of my starched
sailor dress, leave my lace a pale,

shapeless gray, leave my eyes
a pair of dead Forget-me-nots.
I am darkened.

I am darkness.
Closer, beneath the shadow
of my blues, you can see how

I was spackled into being.
I am his Therese.
I am oil on canvas.

9 Comments:

Blogger Catherine said...

I love "I was spackled into being".
Thanks for visiting my blog

5:09 AM  
Anonymous my backyard said...

My favorite part starts with "oils bathe my portrait."

9:25 AM  
Blogger Tammy said...

This was brilliant and I LOVED it!

2:17 PM  
Anonymous January said...

Yes, "spackled into being" is a great image. I like this one, too:

"His hands
and a whorl of midnight

oils bathe my portrait,
my presence, binding me to
the page."

Nice!

5:15 PM  
Anonymous SB said...

Oh, very, very nice. Thank you.

6:27 PM  
Blogger Tina With Wings said...

Gosh, this was completely brilliant. I loved, like mentioned above, 'I was spackled into being.'. Awesome.

8:07 PM  
Blogger Mike Mc said...

Since you said you were going to study my poem I took it upon myself to study yours and see how I’d approach it, at least the first part. I rearranged your first 9 lines into one long statement (I did need to add a few words) I then broke it into 3-to-5 beat lines, then stanzas. I almost always prefer 4 line stanzas, then 3, then 5, never more. (That has mostly to do with my perception/vision, which I have always found entertaining.) Part of my style is to bring the reader openly and clearly on stage, no secrets, no surprises. By starting with one long statement I create a somewhat logical progression, and minimize verbiage. I know that some poets expect readers to ‘discover’ a hidden truth. I find those poems boring and don’t get past the first few lines. If I wanted a puzzle I’d tune in Click and Clack. Then I did the title, which I try to tie to the last of the poem. This way the reader is mentally primed to get there, or somewhere near there. Last I go through the poem over and over again looking for better words, pushing them around, working out my ‘word anger’.

Still Life

I’m Therese Berard,
one of Renoir's oil-on-canvas,
I hang with sisters on museum walls,

his name demurely in the corner,
my still face displayed
in the darkest blue,

life suspended
above a brass plate.

I hope you find this useful.

9:03 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Hi Jilly,

Thanks for visiting my site. I need to send you an e-mail for what you asked me about. But the jist is that my son has Sensory Integration Dysfunction. Meaning the brain has a problem organizing all of the sensory messages it receives (sight, hear, smell, etc.) And so, like traffic, things get bogged down until there's a meltdown. (Alot of times kids with ADD have this.) If you catch it early, a great oc therapist can help the brain "retrain" itself. And you end up with a child who's better able to concentrate and is a generally happier person.

Will try to e-mail you more about this later. (But hope at least this little bit helps.)

Take care,

10:32 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Hi there,

For info on the Sensory Integration Dysfunction stuff, go to http://jaelithej.blogspot.com/ This lady, has a bunch of links on her sidebar regarding SI Dysfunction. Hope this helps. If this is the case for him, or you see that he possesses alot of the symptoms, let me know. Hope all goes well...

11:44 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home