don't trust art

Don’t trust art.
It is a manipulation of the heart.
Beware, beware, the intimate stare
Of this beautiful creature,
For no one is there—
Not God divine, not truth, not nature.
Yes! you have been taught
More emotion is good, and when more emotion is brought
You forget your task and let a story
Wash over you (you do) in its repeating glory.
A fake beginning will have its fake end,
Whether approved by Aristotle or Aunt Myrtle,
If the path is straight, or it bend—
(You are already in the middle, captured, needy—)
A lover will find his lover, or they part
On the sea, or in a dungeon; your heart,
Is all that’s written upon, you are tainted
Not by me, but my heart on your heart painted.
Cast off this fit of colors from a soul
That deserves a light, not this sad dream of this sad mole.


  1. David said,

    December 28, 2011 at 4:42 pm

    I humbly submit a fragment of the last poem of an obscure 19th century poet (no longer obscure, but for reasons other than her poetry), which was written in the pains of late stage tuberculosis:

    Fain would I sing, O Mother blest! the reasons why I love thee;

    Why e’en to name thy name, with joy, O Mary! fills my heart;

    And why the glorious thoughts of thee, in greatness far above me,

    Inspire no fear within my soul, so dear and sweet thou art.

    Yet, if I were to see thee now, in majesty stupendous,

    Surpassing all the crowned saints in highest heaven above,

    Scarce could I dream I am thy child, (O truth sublime, tremendous!),

    For I should think myself to be unworthy of thy love.

    The mother, who desires to be her child’s best earthly treasure,

    Must ever share its grief with it, must understand its pain.

    Queen of my heart! how many years, thy sorrows had no measure;

    What bitter tears thine eyes have shed, my worthless heart to gain!

    So, musing on thy earthly life, in Scripture’s sacred story,

    I dare to look upon thy face, and unto thee draw nigh;

    For when I see thee suffering, — concealed thy marvelous glory —

    It is not hard, then, to believe thy little child am I.

  2. tom said,

    December 28, 2011 at 7:13 pm

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