A Pairing: Tadeusz Różewicz + Rene Magritte

the lovers, magritte

Rene Magritte, The Lovers II (1928)

And yet white
is best described by gray
bird by stone
sunflowers
in December

love poems of old
were descriptions of the flesh
described this and that
for instance eyelashes

and yet red
should be described
by gray the sun by rain
poppies in November
lips by night

the most tangible
description of bread
is a description of hunger
in it is
the damp porous core
the warm interior
sunflowers at night
the breasts belly thighs of Cybele

a spring-clear
transparent description
of water
is a description of thirst
ashes
desert
it produces a mirage
clouds and trees move into
the mirror

Lack hunger
absence
of flesh
is a description of love
is a modern love poem

– Tadeusz Różewicz, Draft of a Modern Love Poem

This one’s for you, Laura. Thank you for the painting request – it took me a while, but it was a lot of fun hunting for the perfect poem to pair with the painting. What would you have picked?

A Pairing: William Carlos Williams + Rene Magritte

Magritte The Return

Rene Magritte, The Return (1940)

Wanderer moon
smiling a
faintly ironical smile
at this
brilliant, dew-moistened
summer morning,—
a detached
sleepily indifferent
smile, a
wanderer’s smile,—
if I should
buy a shirt
your color and
put on a necktie
sky-blue
where would they carry me?

- William Carlos Williams, Summer Song (1917)