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Modern Archaeology

by Trisha De Gracia

She's scribed
like all the buffalo.
Smeared on stone
by gingeroot fingers:
thick, and primitive--
coarse, and ignorant.
Her picture, lit by savagry
repugnant in the dark.

It is me
who leans there, painting.
Cracked and timeworn lips, I'm making.
The colour from her cheeks is draining
off my fingertips, is staining
dust that lines the dirt
that lines my feet.

And it is me
in jealousy
who paints her face grotesque and long
in blood culled from the wounds
I won't inflict.


Posted on 10/12/2007
Copyright © 2024 Trisha De Gracia

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Kristina Woodhill on 10/12/07 at 10:26 PM

I hate to sully this with mere words - the flow is solid and deep. "ancient, coarse, and ignorant. Her picture, lit by savagry repugnant in the dark." - reading these lines aloud has such resonance - so well put together. This is like a many course meal, each adding a sweet or savory, as I look at you painting this canvas of words, pain, history. Quite a fascinating piece.

Posted by Gabriel Ricard on 10/13/07 at 04:08 AM

Yeah, I wasn't sure what to say about this one either. Except that I absolutely freaking love it.

Posted by Coleman Demiurge on 10/13/07 at 09:24 AM

Wow, this is pretty impressive. I really like this poem, partially because it bleeds with envy and discontent (which I adore) and also because the object of contempt here (the mystery individual painted on the wall) could be a whole other person or the actual painter herself. I'm leaning towards the former, but hey, I'm always a sucker for a little ambiguity. Anyway, really great work indeed, one stanza just as biting as the next; great title too. I am going to have to give this my Poem of the Day nod because that is what I have to do... A Most Excellent Poem.

Posted by J. P. Davies on 10/14/07 at 11:44 PM

Just beautiful. The painting is one of my favourite metaphors as well.

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