Tag Archives: Ekphrasis

Flamingo

flamingo
After Maya Angelou

It’s the way she’s bent
into a bird

Right knee tucked
into shoulder

She’s making a sculpture
as if in a ballet class
for a painter

Her toes, painted red
make a feathery tail

It’s the beak that looks
wrong

as if someone has taken
the wet rag mouth and twisted it

into a shape that can’t speak
Lips, mouth and cheeks

gone into the knee
He’s painted a line

down her fine china leg
First blood of a girl turning woman

One ear is open – human
Not of a bird It is listening

First published in John Murphy’s The Lake, July 2014.

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expresh v colonial landscape

He’s too hot to touch in bed after midnight
batteries chokked from the charge of the day
He’s painted his years in the way of von Guerard
crag-man with scalpel on the lookout for the next big commish
Monster canvas, little leaves, shady detail in a felt-funny hat
Big wheels spitting, rev rev revving
Smack in the foreground of a Baroquish frame

She’s broad-brushed her days in the gloom
of a Rothko (wall papery, covering cracks)
The worry of a Tucker Fug of a Turner
Thwacking hangover, too may cigarettes

Too often Pollock melancholia Anaemic
black and white self portraits Blood spurts over her
gun metal carpet turning it black
They say she has a wide aorta Impatiens petals splatter
white tiles (Think American Beauty, Don’t think Pro Hart)
Rose Madder Red straight from her head
she squeezes the tubes

Yet hand in hand side by side
at the end of each day
they say ‘Had a good one?’
and watch Deal or no Deal
before the Six o’clock News

 

Poem first appeared in Shearsman UK, 2012