Treasure Island

Patrick Lodge

THE STONE PICKERS (A conversation with Edward Clausen's, The Stone Pickers, Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle

If you were a stone picker,
that look of resigned surprise
at the pile of stones, defying gravity
to bubble up from the meadow around
your carefully scuffed boots,
would become you.
As it is that pail (water? milk?) ,
that artfully propped basket
(the almost gingham cloth
draped studio-careless across it) ,
that washed-out high buttoned
sexless dress, world-weary
incline of shoulder
are, no less than you, mere artifice.
Though, Polly (may I call you that?)
I may be too flinty with you.
Nursemaid, haymaker,
shepherdess, village girl -
you worked in fields, stood at gates
offered up head, shoulders, body
to the filleting and resolving gaze -
whatever the master ordered up,
you would become.
No less than the painter though,
I can fabricate a narrative of you;
it would speak of subversion.
How that whippet-tense body
would clamp, obdurate
at the raising of the brush.
How you fingered that
swaddle-tight, hessian apron-
almost empire line under your breasts -
as if it was the swirl of a ball gown
and you were celebrating
a full dance card.

You understood well
that woman/servant ju jitsu
which rendered flexible
the painter's hold on you.

Submitted: Friday, July 18, 2014

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

What do you think this poem is about?

Topic(s): women

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Poet's Notes about The Poem

written after viewing the painting. Polly was Clausen's servant who often posed for him in various guises.

Comments about this poem (THE STONE PICKERS (A conversation with Edward Clausen's, The Stone Pickers, Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle by Patrick Lodge )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members.. Updates

New Poems

  1. Don't ever in public, Dr PJ Raj Kamal
  2. Somewhere in time, Mark Heathcote
  3. The wind brings warning, xeno drone
  4. My nature is to write, gajanan mishra
  5. Two Rings, Shannon Paterson
  6. Dreams Incarnate, Dylan Engelbrecht
  7. The Rose, Neela Nath
  8. No one to question, hasmukh amathalal
  9. She does, hasmukh amathalal
  10. Multi-dimensional; heavens?, Mark Heathcote

Poem of the Day

poet Geoffrey Chaucer

The firste stock-father of gentleness,
What man desireth gentle for to be,
Must follow his trace, and all his wittes dress,
Virtue to love, and vices for to flee;
...... Read complete »


Trending Poems

  1. 04 Tongues Made Of Glass, Shaun Shane
  2. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  3. Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
  4. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  5. Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
  6. Dreams, Langston Hughes
  7. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  8. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
  9. If, Rudyard Kipling
  10. Fire and Ice, Robert Frost

Trending Poets

[Hata Bildir]