Saturday, July 12, 2008

On a gorgeous day

UPDATE, 7/14: The first version of this was embarrassingly bad, so I exercised the first rule of poetry revision: excise, excise, excise.

A Picture of Beauty

We admire it
because there is a such thing
existing unto itself, needing
no reference point.

It is not at all like evil in this sense –
did it come before good? Which will come last?
These are not questions
asked of beauty:

finality of worlds,
failings of hearts, this sort of
metaphysics. Of beauty,
there is no doubt, like eyeing
a divine maiden in one of those Renaissance paintings
reclined on a sable loveseat, dove-white
arm bent ever so at the elbow past the natural angle
as if to shade the artist's light,

or the maiden in dreams
along a wooded creek,
floating soundlessly.

The thing about beauty
is it leaves no space
for second-guessing. The feeling
washes over you

in the freshly minted Sunday morning,
the just-woken light careening down.

Studies and surveys have shown
symmetry is beautiful, but I think
it's simpler. The beautiful
is beautiful, a paper boat
on a lagoon, or in a creek,
pointed towards a destination
we’ve glimpsed, perhaps, in a favorite art gallery
or childhood dream.

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