These are things a woman notices:
Whether or not she is appreciated
Art that is about something
Death in art,
a ruptured thing, decapitated by a streak of green
handless arms dressed in bright orange
knitted by missing hands.
A flower dying gracefully in the presence of acid rain
Discards from a world too hurried
to see the patterns of life in each cast-off.
The land already filled with itself
in no need of our refuse
The purple tinged toes, barren of life
hanging above the crumpled earth
The earth ground colors of soil
- after too much sun
- after a hanging.
The defiance of a naked form
seen through the eyes of a woman,
The places where courage has seeped through
the cracks of patriarchal strongholds
to explode onto canvas in bright, harlot lipstick, red
leaving some places completely untouched, raw and wild.
things that curl and coil onto one another
- fall into one another
- hold one another
separate from one another – at the seams
bringing together burlapsack beings
The rising bald black spheres of the unconscious
shiny with their secrets.
Pink plastic rose-strewn chairs
among standing room only men.
The pale, pink, flush of a child’s cheek about to
feel the first sharpness of teeth
The soft dewy redness of raspberries fresh from the field
The round heft of a melon
A small swish of bright yellow chiffon hem brushing
through a child’s world
- as she rises
to feel the passing waft of an angel robe.
The solid warmth of polished stone
The way skin stretches and folds over pain
- and age
The wistful froth of lace
at the neck
covering the rising breastplate
the places where bodies break and
wings fall to earth.
The way a hand rests upon an open page
For words to turn the page, to reveal
- to astonish.
The power of words to break
- to inspire
- to heal
The bright round moon luminescence of pearls
- released, unable to stop
a woman burning with desire
to paint, to mold, to sculpt,
The fragility of bold ideas
- who considered the purple star underside of open crocus petals?
The need for luck
- and monofilament line
The color of light
The diaspora of art
The brevity of beauty
The line of orange against grey
The crumble of white polystyrene against solid bronze
The crease of hair against skin
Shoulders, clavicles, bone and tendon, flesh and tissue that hold
the weight of breasts.
These things are sign of Woman
walking through a world
where She sees herself
Written in the National Museum for Women in the Arts
September 5, 2009