Sunday, August 29, 2010

A Bunch of Grapes
In A Bottle of Wine
for D.D. & D.B.A. & P.A.

she has all of those paintings,
all of that art, does she have also
the broken hearts, the shattered lives

the stories behind the paintings,
the pieces, the lives, are as many or are more

though these stories, these lives
are not upon a base or in a frame
or in anything to be carried or to be kept neatly

is she as interested in these lives
as she is in the art she buys

true paintings, true poems, one truth
painters, poets, sculptors, another

to thank her for patronage
it was my wish to grip the curtain in my fist
and in and with one gesture, one sweep
pull it back, let her see
the life behind poetry

wanted her to see the raw material
from which poetry is made

wanted her to see
what art- what artists go through

before it comes out
like a bunch of grapes
in a bottle of wine

wanted her to see how messy it is
how messy it gets

before it becomes what is neat enough
to hang upon walls or to sit in a corner
or elsewhere in a room

a life is not a brain you can keep in a bottle
in formaldehyde, it's volatile,
it's firecrackers on the fourth of July

it's what Guy Fawkes was about to make happen
with or to or within the house of parliament
had he had his way, had it been his day

art is understanding
what Bob Marley wrote and sings
"I feel like boomin' a church"

the stuff from which art is derived
is not nice, is not neat

much of what is clean and neat
is derived from what's nasty, messy
not neat at all

artists, poets fall and break,
like limbs like teeth, like hearts
their limbs, their teeth, their hearts

thought she'd have been interested
to know, to see, to get on a boat
upon the rough seas of an artist's life

coming through the Middle Passage
over and over, again and again

every minute of the day,
every day of his life/her life
without end, through out eternity

art s/he makes, made to make
some pounds, shillings, pence
to keep body and soul
from coming together
from falling apart

© Obediah Michael Smith, 2010
3:24 a.m. 26.08.10


Anonymous d.a. said...

what I find ironic is that the word "apart" is together when it should be apart but 'a part' means together or a component of.

Anyways, I love this poem Obi, certainly one of your best poems very very very skillful--- its dances it sings it it flies it seems that i have competition.

Monday, August 30, 2010 11:42:00 PM  

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