Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Judith Vollmer: For Aaron Sheon

"Tiny hatches, if you make enough of them, make

an entire etching move," you told us while we smoked

in the lit cave of your Tuesday 1-2:15. We scratched

our pens: dance & film posters, flyers to end the war. 

In our famous jeans we slouched before your podium & slides
 weaving

the movements & the solo trips.

"He was lonely." "She had no patron."

"Scale extends us & reins us in," you said of the strange
 Piranesis.

"Find the heart of a city by stepping in."

My alleys & arcades pressed onto the copperplate of my 
 20-year-old brain

fusing its hemispheres. I hitched to Colmar and found

the Isenheim Altarpiece, figures on the old panels aflame,
 then turned

my back on all religions because you'd shown us Goya's
 firing squad


& Daumier's gutters where people looked for water.

"Movement in a painting is important as Dante."

I've looked for Dante's houses, cafés, notebooks, 
 & horse-stalls, & someone

always says Oh, you mean The Poet.
                                
"The body doesn't make sense by itself," you said, 
pointing the red-tip

wand at the chalky nudes of Ingres. If I am lonely


in any town whose museum

treasures its one Whistler or Bonnard, I stand before the image

hear your voice; my eyes

un-scroll, I lift 

again like a hinge.

Copyright 2019 Judith Vollmer.

Judith Vollmer’s books include The Water Books published by Autumn House Press.

The Burden (The Laundress) by Honoré Daumier (1850-53). Hermitage Museum.

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This entry was posted on March 11, 2020 by in Art and Cinema, Opinion Leaders, Poetry and tagged , , , , , .

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