Wind from the Sea
after Wind from the Sea. by Andrew Wyeth (USA) 1947
Hundreds of dead hands – some sounding as names on living lips
some known to no one moving air –
cut, planed, and placed the pine and plaster
straight lines and depth that conspire to hold wavy glass through which
distant conifers serrate the skyline.
The field of gale blown grass rolls
where parallel tracks beckon motorists touch the smell of the saltwater’s edge.
Perhaps Christina’s feet before the shriveling of nerves and muscles
creaked the dusty cut nailed steps
to hang hand me down curtains resurrected from the parlour
asserting her order in angular unused space beneath
split slate shingles shielding her and Alvaro from Noreastern blows.
Lace panels unravel through winter dusk decompositions and summer solstice swelter –
for all thread human spun be doomed to untwist –
through decades of imprisoned air until 1947
when the odd artist, their neighbour Betsy’s beau and summer sojourner,
determined to sketch the dormer window’s divinity where
one could step beyond roof and peer from panes into nude air.
August sun wringed the wooden walls until
this decade’s lone attic visitor, sweating amid cobweb tapestry and paper wasp palaces,
dropped his sketchpad to dance to the plain gable window
facing the Atlantic’s edge,
then raised the fly specked sash above dead moths and shriveled bees.
The sting and scent of the sudden seabreeze billow the rotting fabric –
languid birds embroidered by long forgotten fingers
explode and abstract into life.
Insect detritus disappeared as that wind chewed a portrait of frail Christina
crawling free against the ceaseless
indifferent tics and tocs of tides in water and sky
into the fledgling eyes of our image thief
who swelled beyond the truth
the moving air’s genius trapped in the skull of
line and light and shadow.
Anything more than the nothing his brush added
would belie his muse’s beauty.
Tyson West has published speculative fiction and poetry in free verse, form verse and haiku distilled from his mystical relationship with noxious weeds and magpies in Eastern Washington. He has no plans to quit his day job in real estate. He is currently the featured USA poet at Muse Pie Press.
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