–on meeting Benjamin Haydon
The artist breathes a divine
varnish, transfigures a body
to burn like sun on new snow.
So like grass to the rain I make him
my god, beg him to fall down
beside me, show me what colors
his hands invent. How everything
disappoints from a lesser
vantage: tempera on wood,
more viscous than it sounds,
the painting’s insistence on its own
smallness, and the artist’s pale body,
slight veins shadowing his hands.
University of Southern Mississippi