Wednesday, December 02, 2015


Édouard Manet, "Le Déjeuner sur l'herbe," 1862-63.

Not a simulacrum, sitting here wearing
nothing except your gaze on my skin,
but the X-factor in the work: it can’t be
done without me. The room smells like
turps, linseed oil, wooden stretcher bars,
and sweat. Those single-pane windows
sieve the light, let in the cold, but I don’t
feel the chill. A galaxy of hot lamps circle
me like little suns, put me at the center
of this universe where I’m neither subject
nor object, but co-author: the one not
holding the brush, the one who embodies
the question of what’s being, and what’s
represented, in that fresh, gliding stroke.

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