Monday, June 03, 2013

A Brief Composition-- a poem

A Brief Composition

(For Paula Modersohn-Becker 1896-1907)

The pain of parting.
Otto, Elsbeth
paradisaical Worpswede.
Warp and weft
of a fine life, unraveled
I do not want any child...

Paris moonlight.
Brushes in your hand.
The ping of canvas,
smell of turpentine.
Women at easels
at ease beside men.

Women without stays,
voices chatter, operatic.
Sleet on slate rooftops.
Paint paint paint.
Rilke buys a small canvas.
Somehow you will stay in Paris.

Worpswede again.
Soft moon of womb,
waiting waiting.
Yet still you paint.
Mother and child,
yourself with Camellia.

Pant pant pant.
Fingers curl
eyes search
lungs bellow.
She lives in your stead.

Your paints dry
your brushes warp.
Once taut canvas
shrouds your brief star.
A pity, you said
and then out.

s.pope 2013

painting by Paula Modersohn-Becker


Mystic Meandering said...

I had to look up the artist as I was unfamiliar with her. Incredible story, and your poem captures it well. ", unraveled" indeed. Seems we are all a "brief star", a "brief composition."

soulbrush said...

Absolutely wonderful- can feel the peace and stillness here. Am still waiting for my copy of your wonderful book of poetry- do you know if they've been sent out yet?

sukipoet said...

soulbrush, thank you for asking. They were schedueled to be send out June 22, but they are two weeks behind.

Lynne with an e said...

precise, succinct, and touching
I learned so much here, and was moved.

Robin said...

I love this one.... and I, too, knew nothing about this wonderful woman. Suki, you are teaching us history - as well as giving us meaningful stories - through your poems. Hmmm....looks to me like a second book is in the works!!!


♥ Robin ♥

Anonymous said...

Suki, I love this poem !

Lynn Cohen said...

I must look up the other story, yours is touching!

studio lolo said...

This was powerful the first time I read it, and then I looked her up and read her bio, viewed her art. Now this poem makes me teary eyed.

Beautiful, Suki.

Annie said...


Beyond beautiful. xoxo

Kim Andersen said...

I had to read about her life after reading this .... you have a gift for expressing the universality of emotion. A lovely lovely work this is ....