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Van Gogh sans une Oreille

Poet's Notes

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Thoughts froth, crest, and merge through ocean’s 
indiscriminate wandering, no recognizable
beginning or end like smoke on the wind, 
melding, melting, fusing coalescing.

Reality a fragile grasp held on 
a two-dimensional canvas once white, 
clean, stretching taunt, taunt as the 
implausible reality of our existence-
existence standing, stranding, hair, fur, frond's 
weaving about crowns of trees in rye fields.

Everything alive, writhing, wanting,
needing, thriving, dying-skin crawling reality
like orange oil on the hollow cheeks of despair.
Pain, defies, belies, confusion's frame stretching
upon illusion's claim-eye to hand, hand to brush
the clean, white, membrane between brain pan and
paint pan. No recognizable beginning or end
melding, melting, fusing, coalescing-gone.

Self-Portrait with Fur Cap, Bandaged Ear & Pipe
Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890 Dutch)

First Published in Five Poetry Magazine 2013

Copyright © | Year Posted 2015

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Date: 10/20/2019 1:57:00 PM
I like how your 'verb stacking' increases the tonal velocity yet, simultaneously, insist we pay greater attention to particulars. As a fan of Van Gogh, I'm not familiar with this piece. Including the Japanese print is curious. His position might have been determined simply by the best light entering his room.
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Warlov Avatar
Robert Warlov
Date: 10/21/2019 11:49:00 AM
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Debbie Guzzi
Date: 10/20/2019 3:49:00 PM
Truly I never noticed the print but as someone trained art I'd say he needed the optical weight of the rectangle to weigh down the right side to match the left. Light & Love
Date: 4/2/2015 10:01:00 AM
I love VAN GOGH! Being French I loved the title. An amazing write a great read, thank you.
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Date: 3/31/2015 10:50:00 PM
The macaronic title is especially interesting because of its use. One implication is that Vincent's self-mutilation invites a look at continuing pain and a search of the "implausible reality of existence" but reference to "ocean's wandering" is not enough to justify it. I very much appreciate macaronics as a poetic device, and have employed it several times myself, But here, the reason is not clear to me--the location of most of his painting, perhaps? intriguing work.
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Robert Ludden
Date: 4/1/2015 1:41:00 PM
and my questions to you?
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Debbie Guzzi
Date: 4/1/2015 7:19:00 AM
Will be thinking on that Robert since you delightfully have given me many newer mostly unused by me words to ponder!
Date: 3/31/2015 1:44:00 PM
Debbie, how could I be offended by a critique? As long as it is an honest one, even the most severe critiques mean that the reader has read my poem carefully. A reaction then is a real benefit to me, and I covet all such reactions. They are a major way for me to LEARN. Fire away at them, please. You help me immeasurably when you do! -Dean
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