Duccio paints a pillow
for the Madonna to sit uponna, shaped
like a hot dog,
its countours long and thin
as the old-man babe who’s perched within
his mother’s dark robe,
itself a distended globe.
All is flattened
in the foreshadowing, incipient chiaroscuro
of what’s to come, except
for that brown orange pillow
that billows just a bit where
the Virgin doesn’t sit.
We all need salt softness
A draftish poem for my own prompt of Poetics Italian-STyle for dVerse Poets Pub. Duccio was an early Renaissance Italian painter, painting in the late thirteenth, early fourteenth century in Sienna. From my high school foray into art history, I always thought of him as the painter who made hot dog pillows that the Madonna sits or lays down upon in the various scenes of her depicted life. I’m not sure that this is a certified art historical fact as I did not actually find any mention of it in rooting around for this poem, though certainly the pillow above would qualify.
Below is another Duccio, and below that, my own version of an early Renaissance painting. (Guess which is which.) (Note, “chiaroscuro” is a technique of painting using light and shadow to sculpt images–the technique was truly developed a little later than Duccio.)
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