Gothic

David HockneyThe-Bigger-Splash-1967

[Wrote this when I was thirty six, influenced by the atmosphere of a Patrick White novel. One long sentence in six five-line verses (quintains, quintets). The painting is by David Hockney, ‘The Bigger Splash’ (1967).]

Gothic

Dank curtained doors, thick yellow light
dripping through white lattice like honey
over cotton wool, she enters, gingerly fingering
her rings, eyes full of night inching out
the dark little stain in the bottom drawer

over which she’d always laid out her diary
and then, meticulous, her savings book
with cold misgivings, or dust itching
the back of her throat while dots of gold
glint outside rippling over fish scales

in that pond he’d had especially laid out
on the very day he brought her there
slipping smoothly over receding asphalt
twenty miles from the station in the well-oiled
Bentley, snowy gusts of gulls wheeling

overhead, bruised storm clouds tumescent
in the west, suddenly discharging theatrically
spot-lit eternities inching away over marble
inwardly like a spider from the thrashing
brittle prey too hard to handle in her web

as lightning caresses the tree tops
and latticed patterns shoot like shrapnel
over ceilings walls bed and bodies
and hands that smell of formalin fumble
to know and name and pin down her writhing

that is but a writhing under the act of pinning
under the glass of eyes glazed with pride,
fear and longing now floating tranquilly
among the pond lilies, transfixed, laid out,
gazing, forever, at the receding stars.

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~ by Peter Lach-Newinsky on February 9, 2016.

One Response to “Gothic”

  1. well done. I dig it!

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