Rembrandt remastered

the established are in for it.
frames gone, borders sliced,
the mass is spilling over.
the vivid are dying to escape,
digitally shot and hung.
the stark strokes clean
as on leaving the old master.
happy couples find themselves
together, facing the light
or left in shade. watching
children gleeful, agape, annoyed
how did we find ourselves here
willing to smooth old scores,
pieces, papers, exotic folds,
starched collars, dark eyes
gazing out into a new world
of philosophers and cloth-makers
sailors, travelers, poets,
the old saviours and legends
who steal cursory glances. upwards
outwards, onwards. settlers return
their collective gaze, fired
remastered. a touch, a leap,
a glare, all guns blazing, almost
as aware of the darkness as we are.


Shun materiality. Object-
less thus, the two, int-
ertwined like prose and
poetry, reclined to recon-
stuct Rodin’s Kiss whi-
lst Billie Holiday sang
her heart out the window
under a November 1973 mo-
on. He wore a leather jac-
ket, the latest levi flares
and a pair of leather
high-heeled boots as he kick-
started an arc of circles
near the top of a large
canvass. Some fell over th-
e edge but one remain-
ed whole

Man lying on a wall

Man Lying on a Wall (1957) by LS Lowry

A moment of joy lifts him
from pavement onto factory wall
from straight to horizontal he paints
a line into his fag and he and
the chimneys smoke and
the clock tower strikes

and the bus pulls up
and we all journey home
through soot and chill, but he’s
not going anywhere soon. A man,
lying in state balancing his hat
like a crown on his belly

for all the world and his dog
to see. The steady fall and rise
of middle-age. Brolly and briefcase
stand to attention,
ready for battle

against the hazy smog, the stretcher bond
of bricks and mortar. A sense,
then, of contemplation
only wants an artist
by chance on the top deck
of a bus passing and then this painting

for us to remember him by.

I wrote this parody of the poem ‘Man Walking’ by Owen Lowry in October 2013.

Look at the painting before you

Look at the painting before you
read the text. See gold. Light.
A blue jug. A still life. Purple
and bronze. Stand back and look.
Don’t be tempted by the text.
Your hands tunneling my sight.
Your breath on my neck. Now say.
Gold, light, a blue jug, a still life.
Now read the title to the side.

Rain, Steam, and Speed

Turner is painting the sky tonight
Shining the dark and blacking the bright
Sunning the clouds and shrouding the beams
Sleeping the day and waking the dreams
Roaring the past, stunning the here
Closing the future, distancing near
Raining the sun, clouding the sight
Stilling the engine, speeding the light
Turner is painting the sky tonight
Turner is painting the sky tonight