Saturday, April 5, 2008

Day 6--Two Suppers at Emmaus by Caravaggio

Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, Supper at Emmaus
c. 1600-01; Oil on canvas, 54 3/4 x 76 3/4 in; National Gallery, London

The worm in the apple gnaws the fruit away,
and the dressed fowl the men have devoured

by the time Caravaggio remembers the inn-keeper
and his creased wife, the finer linens

and the pitcher as detailed as the Gospel of Luke,
and the ridiculously large ears of Cleopas.

What fierce blaze gets fired and glazed
within the tender hearted as a stranger paints

the air with his midrash of pigment and time?
What light layers enough shadow over years?

I am inventing this last part; the rest you could have
read or been shown on your own:

Caravaggio once punched a drunk in the head
and saw Jesus as the man’s flesh dented

beneath his fist like a warm loaf. For five years,
the stranger arose again and again in Caravaggio’s eye.

Caravaggio, Supper at Emmaus 1606, Oil on canvas, 141 × 175 cm Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan


vmh said...

Over from Surrounding. These are beautiful poems. Great stuff. Thank you.

dw said...

Thank you, Vicky. I'm having a lot of fun with the challenge. It was nice of Rob Mack to put up the link.