The Lament of Paintings

When they announced God's death
and then man's
Art could only count
on an adjourned judgment

so it wasn't long
to wait

I saw pictures
led to market
I saw
I swear I saw
a tear on the ebony cheek
of a Nubian slave
(painting: A Memory from Egypt)

her body cowering under the blows
of an auction mallet

I saw the misery of paintings
distressed by their museum fate
the endless grief of icons
deprived of prayerful attention

yet art remains alive
though swept
by a dark wave
to a chosen few she opens her windows
to let in the breeze
of the divine

to the rest she leaves
access at the minimal level
of Profit and Commerce


Władysław Podrazik