Raj Arumugam


The Rower


you row, row, your wooden boat,
rough, sturdy, hardy, made for wear and strain
you yourself
gathered, determined, as tough as nails
as uncouth as your boat
how long have you rowed?
How much is time, what is space and distance
as the ship behind you is never reached
for it forever recedes, as you row, row
and perennially speed the prow
towards
Towards what?
Towards that
Which forever recedes, as you row, row
You row, row, the wooden boat
And all time and effort, all will and motion
is but oil and canvas
A picture, an impression, an illusion
A verisimilitude
of what?
Capturing what?
To embrace what?
That which eludes
Past time, past space, past mind and body
you row, row, your wooden boat
rough, sturdy, hardy, made for wear and strain
you yourself
gathered, determined, as tough as nails
as uncouth as your boat
how long have you rowed?

Submitted: Monday, December 24, 2012
Edited: Monday, December 24, 2012

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Poet's Notes about The Poem

poem based on painting 'The Rower',1883 by James Sidney Edouard, Baron Ensor (13 April 1860 - 19 November 1949)

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