Saturday, November 27, 2010

new poems after a long drought

Spent a leisure afternoon
at Galleria Borghese and saw
some human faces -- carved in stone --
that gave me pause...

There was Bernini's David, biting
his lip in keen determination
to land five smooth stones
on his chosen target.  And I recall
that lip-biting determination
'cause I have bit that lip once or twice...

And Pauline Bonaparte, resting reflectively
on a mattress of marble
whose flowing wrinkles and
living indentations show the
slight weight of the subject
in dynamic detail.

And look, there's Daphne fleeing Apollo,
preferring to turn into a tree, rather
than live the life of an object
of passioned pursuit.
Apollo, uncaring, feels her heart
still beating as her flesh turns to bark,
as her arms become branches.

Hermaphrodite, lying in repose,
hiding her passion and her bisexed parts.

And finally, perhaps Bernini's greatest
work of art -- Aeneas and Anchises.
Sadly, I know homeless Anchises' look of worry.
And sadly, I know fleeing Aeneas' burden.
Sadly, so sadly, I know these faces.