04 Sep Painting the study
I belong to a circle of Open University creative writers, Louise Wilford is an online friend and mainstay character in the group. When I discovered this piece in her repertoire I thought I’d share. It changes the pace in my Journal, slowing the reader for a few moments, I like the contemplative nature of this poem.
Let me lay here for a while
breathing in this childhood smell. Emulsion paint.
Dust sheets ruched in wormcasts at my toes.
A light-bulb moon above me hangs unlit.
Spread thin, this blue’s quite dark,
moodier than the turquoise on the tin:
I’m floating in a sea, adrift
in waves of night-blue cloud-dust.
The slats of the blinds slice the evening light.
Beyond, cars surge and ebb,
the daily wax and wane of other lives.
But let me rest here, crowd-surfing gentle
fingers of thought, remembering
all the other rooms: grubby magnolia transformed
to rose or tiger-lily, grass or hemp or barely peach.
The shoulder-aching effort, push and drag
of brush or roller – paintpad once – twisting a room
from that to this. Capturing a dream
that slithers off, that won’t be caught –
replaced by other wraiths – fire-red or Chanel grey,
sand or cloud or dusk or sunset pink or cyclamen.
Promises that won’t be pinned to the plaster.
But this sleepy blue’s a lullaby.
About the author: Louise Wilford is currently writing a children’s fantasy novel. She was born in South Yorkshire and born with such passion for poetry that she can not stop herself writing. Her experience as an English teacher has provided fertile ground and she can be proud of a strong body of published work, around one hundred poems and short stories at the last count. Her inspiration comes from a love of words and visual prompts from the world of art and design. Louise recalls, ‘I adored visiting Vanessa Bell’s home a few years ago and one of my prized possessions is a green and cream striped pot I bought from there, with a lid which has a bird motif on top. I am very drawn to ceramics and love interesting glazes.’ Painting the study was first published in The Lake, September 2018. It is reproduced here with kind permission of the author.
Image by Yasmin Chopin, taken at the studio of Faux Creation.