A Public Sphere for Poetry, Nature, and Politics
In the detail from Botticelli’s painting,
the one of the oranges in their deep green trees at twilight,
I’m able to feel it again. As a child,
I didn’t see the brush strokes but the painter’s pure vision,
standing between the real and the oils that caught it.
What floats between the thing and the vision of the thing,
is the art. Some want to take this away from us
by pointing out the vicissitudes of oil and age,
inserting biography or theory, but I avoid them.
When I go to the gallery, I stand in the doorway
and look at the paintings, invite my child,
the one who saw the oranges in their luminescence,
longed to reach out and take one from the tree.
You scoff. But I feel in the dark for childish things,
the ones the proverb tells us to put away.
I tell you I could stay alive for weeks
holding one in my mind, crossing the desert of our time.
Copyright 2016 Doug Anderson