Wednesday, July 13, 2011

First the Rowers

image from Magpie Tales of: People of Chilmark, Thomas Hart Benton, 1920

First the rowers promised speed and smooth flowing

They argued about cover and secrecy

The wind was light, the sea glass, clean running

No pursuit, no threat: victory assured

Second the seagulls swing across the sky

Dropping fish pieces, seaweed and draggly feathers

The players dodge the bombardment, alarmed

Keeping watch aft, searching

Third the waves mount, frustration piling

Toss barque and fling canvas awry

The players cling to the gunwales shrieking the wind

Machine-man, thief, sinner, thought

Fourth the gods shout and mount thunder clouds

Spear lightning and shaft rain

They’ve taken the World!  Give back our Globe! 

Hurl skywards and seawards men

Fifth, Zeus spinning notion, takes scissors

Fate the wire, floundering, now panic-gripped

The edge veering, the sea-mountains

Darkness, game played and lost

thanks to Tess for the prompt.  For more Magpie Tales see here


Helen said...

Enjoyed how you incorporated so much of this painting's detail in your Magpie!

120 Socks said...

Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful, and in case I didn't say it WONDERFUL!

Templeton's fury said...

excellent work

jabblog said...

You certainly found a lot in this illustration - well done! (It left me completely cold!)

HyperCRYPTICal said...


Anna :o]

Glenn Buttkus said...

This one stunning, isabel;
frightening, graphic, focused,
propelling us into both darkness
and an angry sea, reminding us
that we have not been amphibious
for eons. I like the line:
/hurl skywards and seawards men?

Tess Kincaid said...

Wonderful. I simply adore the notion of Zeus taking scissors. Excellent piece.