Pompidou Skies
  • I

    Ernst’s ample pagan horns
    Transumute sunlight into blocks of lead
    Pierce the pure cobalt horizon

    With dread, forbidden longing.

    Cats, cats
    Everywhere cats
    On the rooftops of Paris

    Larger than life,
    That’s how the grafitti writers
    Wanted them

    Bold and beautiful
    Perhaps making urban skylines

    Bright again.

    They creep into the lives
    of contemporary Monmartre artists

    Into Pompidou skies.

    They teach the scratching lines of Picasso
    To curl into swathes of purple
    With no attempt

    To touch the outlines with the paint
    Or fill the spaces between.


    Braque’s instumentations
    Jump into the canvass
    Rotate mechanics

    Berate all with cries of “we’re not human yet!”

    Their fate
    To just become
    Automatons of motion.

    Kandinsky’s thin ink outlines
    Hold in the bodies of dancing
    Amoeba creations

    Keep their glowing thin skins
    From showering abstractions
    Into the turning Saint-Phalle metallics

    Of Pompidou’s infinity pools below.

    A mess of Matta’s technical cartoons
    Are blown into part life
    By explosions of red depth and shaded light

    By the breath of an eternal lovers’ night

    Burnt into my mind
    On a stretched out, landscape canvass
    Whose vastness shines and shines

    To the sounds of Picabia’s mastery of mechanics
    That flatten colours and break time

    I yearn to find corners to hide in
    Fall down the curves
    Unpick the jigsaw designs

    Watch the pieces of his thought unwind.


    This is a poem based upon reactions to works by Matta, Picasso, Erns, Braque and Picabia at the Pompidou Centre, Paris. The version Pompidou Skylines can be found in my collection Dervish Days, available for the Kindle at Amazon.

    March 19th, 2008 | admin | No Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

About The Author

Sean Woodward is a British artist, writer and musician. His art is collected internationally and his essays, fiction and poetry have been published in a number of international publications. He is the author of A Grammar of Spirits, Keys to the Hoodoo Kingdom, ARCHONIX, NECRONIX, Erzulie of the Deep, The Grimoire of ZAL and co-author of The Infernal Faces of Hekate. AEONIX and Keys to the Voudon Kingdom are forthcoming from zoshouse.com

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