Monday, April 11, 2016


Nicolas Poussin, "A Path Leading into
a Forest Clearing
," c. 1635 - 40

The empty space that becomes sunlight
within a sketch by Poussin; the empty
space that’s been sun-erased, the blank
where a sleepy rattlesnake basks in my
memory before Peter intervenes, breaks
its spine with a shovel to kill it. It’s the
empty space that’s a constant, allowing
us to take our breaths, standing with us.
The empty space, full of both figure and
ground until a vine charcoal gesture sets
them apart, rough toothed gesso’d paper
biting as gently as a lover on the artist’s
fingertips as the mark is made. Creation
needs its empty space, creation is the
constant and it will fill us, overtopping
our floodgates until, again, we’re empty.

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