Icarus

Today, not much from me. I wanted to share the words of a poet, who described his perceiving of the paintings of the old masters. Close to mine. As an illustration, I am showing the Landscape with the Fall of Icarus, currently considered a repetition of Pieter Bruegel’s composition. Which means that however there is no certainty as to whether he painted this exact picture, he is the author of the composition itself.

Wysten Hugh Auden, Musée des Beaux-Arts

About suffering they were never wrong,
The Old Masters: how well they understood
Its human position: how it takes place
While someone else is eating or opening a window or just walking dully along;
How, when the aged are reverently, passionatly waiting

For the miraculous birth, ther always must be
Children who did not specially want it to happen, skating
On a pond at the edge of the wood:
They never forgotThat even the dreadfil martydom must run its course

Anyhow in the corner, some untidy spot
Where the dogs go on with their doggy life and torturer’s horse
Scratches its innocent behind on a tree.
In Breugel’s Icarus for instances: how everything turns away
Quite leisurely from the disaster; the ploughman may
Have heard the splash, the forsaken cry,
But for him it was not an important failure; the sun shone
As it had to on the white legs disappearing into the green
Water; and the expensive delicate ship must have seen
Something amazing, a boy falling out of the sky,
How somewhere to get to and sailed calmly on.

Pieter Bruegel the Elder (attributed), Landscape with the Fall of Icarus, Musees Royaux des Beaux-Arts de Belgique, Bruksela © public domain


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