Nov 24th – Slated for the Shadows

November 24th – Slated for the Shadows
08.20 x 08.30

Much he did annoyed them,
his peers, who gathered
round and watched him
work the oils.

Why must he work like that?
they would say, behind
his back, as faces swam
out of the dark canvas.

Can’t you be more like
Michaelangelo? they would ask
as he worked from life
in half the time.

But he knew, always,
that he was going to be like
himself, and his vision
was exactly that.

A quiet word, in a Pope’s ear
made the charges go
away: street fighter artist
no longer on the run

but in Rome, making the world
run to him. Still, though,
he was trouble, wanting
to take on the world.

Criticism rolled over him
one day, stabbed him the next:
he would stab back.
Slated for the shadows

that defined his art, they
were nothing to the shadows
that defined his mind.
Caravaggio. Part worshipped,

part loved, part loathed.
He didn’t care: lived for the sound
and the feel of the drag
of the brush across canvass,

his hand a blur as he worked.
A man who refused to live
in the shadows: a man who
made the shadows live.


inspired by a prompt from here

One thought on “Nov 24th – Slated for the Shadows

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