Roses

R

“painting has no air . . .”
—Gertrude Stein

That there should never be air
in a picture surprises me.
It would seem to be only a picture
of a certain kind, a portrait in paper
or glue, somewhere a stickiness
as opposed to a stick-to-it-ness
of another genre. It might be
quite new to do without
that air, or to find oxygen
on the landscape line
like a boat which is an object
or a shoe which never floats
and is stationary.

Still there
are certain illnesses that require
air, lots of it. And there are nervous
people who cannot manufacture
enough air and must seek
for it when they don’t have plants,
in pictures. There is the mysterious
traveling that one does outside
the cube and this takes place
in air.

It is why one develops
an attitude toward roses picked
in the morning air, even roses
without sun shining on them.
The roses of Juan Gris from which
we learn the selflessness of roses
existing perpetually without air,
the lid being down, so to speak,
a 1912 fragrance sifting
to the left corner where we read
“La Merveille” and escape.
44
Rating:

Comment form:

*Max text - 500. Manual moderation.

Similar Poems:

Staggerlee wonders by James Baldwin
James Baldwin
1

I always wonder
what they think the niggers are doing
while they, the pink and alabaster pragmatists,
are containing
Russia
and defining and re-defining and re-aligning
China,
Read Poem
0
83
Rating:

Six Further Studies by Keith Waldrop
Keith Waldrop
I

In heaven there is no more sea, and houses no longer need a widow’s
walk. And no more widows, there being neither marriage nor giving
in marriage. How the air hangs lower and lower on this—I hope
—hottest day of summer. A faintly rotten scent the ground gives off
brings to mind lilacs that have budded and blossomed. There are no
more blossoms, perfume and purple gone for a year, as if forever. In
heaven there are no tears, salt water wiped away entirely. One moment
Read Poem
0
48
Rating:

Of Being Numerous: Sections 1-22 by George Oppen
George Oppen
1

There are things
We live among ‘and to see them
Is to know ourselves’.

Occurrence, a part
Of an infinite series,

The sad marvels;

Of this was told
Read Poem
0
57
Rating:

Fresh Air by Kenneth Koch
Kenneth Koch
I

At the Poem Society a black-haired man stands up to say
“You make me sick with all your talk about restraint and mature talent!
Haven’t you ever looked out the window at a painting by Matisse,
Or did you always stay in hotels where there were too many spiders crawling on your visages?
Did you ever glance inside a bottle of sparkling pop,
Or see a citizen split in two by the lightning?
I am afraid you have never smiled at the hibernation
Read Poem
0
47
Rating:

Abundance by John Ciardi
John Ciardi
I

Once I had 1000 roses.
Literally 1000 roses.
I was working for a florist
back in the shambling ‘Thirties
when iced skids of 250 roses
sold for $2 at Faneuil Hall.
So for $8 I bought
Read Poem
0
34
Rating:

Falling by James L. Dickey
James L. Dickey
A 29-year-old stewardess fell ... to her
death tonight when she was swept
through an emergency door that sud-
denly sprang open ... The body ...
was found ... three hours after the
accident.
—New York Times
Read Poem
0
47
Rating:

Hymn to Life by James Schuyler
James Schuyler
The wind rests its cheek upon the ground and feels the cool damp
And lifts its head with twigs and small dead blades of grass
Pressed into it as you might at the beach rise up and brush away
The sand. The day is cool and says, “I’m just staying overnight.”
The world is filled with music, and in between the music, silence
And varying the silence all sorts of sounds, natural and man made:
There goes a plane, some cars, geese that honk and, not here, but
Not so far away, a scream so rending that to hear it is to be
Read Poem
0
87
Rating:

Andrea del Sarto by Robert Browning
Robert Browning
But do not let us quarrel any more,
No, my Lucrezia; bear with me for once:
Sit down and all shall happen as you wish.
You turn your face, but does it bring your heart?
I'll work then for your friend's friend, never fear,
Treat his own subject after his own way,
Fix his own time, accept too his own price,
And shut the money into this small hand
When next it takes mine. Will it? tenderly?
Oh, I'll content him,—but to-morrow, Love!
I often am much wearier than you think,
This evening more than usual, and it seems
As if—forgive now—should you let me sit
Here by the window with your hand in mine
And look a half-hour forth on Fiesole,
Read Poem
0
100
Rating:

Wildflowers by Richard Howard
Richard Howard
for Joseph Cady

Camden, 1882 Is it raining, Mary, can you see?
Read Poem
0
91
Rating: