Saturday, February 7, 2009

Van Gogh's Shoes

                             Van Gogh


The shoes of an itinerant.
The shoes of a man 
Who walks onward, onward,
Always seeking, always doubting.

These shoes,
Thrown down carelessly
By a man
Who sleeps in his shirt.

By a man who smells of absinthe
And unwashed women.

He sits on the edge of his bed,
Looking at his shoes.
Trying to focus.
Trying to decide what shoes are for.

How long has he had these shoes?
Was he wearing them all those years ago
When, briefly, he knew love?
Did someone stand on them
To reach up to kiss him?

If only he could focus!

Did he walk the dreary streets
Of Borinage
In these shoes? They look old enough.
See! There is still a trace
Of coal-dust in the seams!

Dd he polish them, briefly,
For Paris?
Did his brother once say
'Buy some new shoes, Vincent!'
Or was that someone else?

Where did he walk today?
Ah, pollen!
From sunflowers!
The gold dust lies thin
On the  faded leather.
Or is that coal-dust?


Ah yes,
He will put on these shoes.
He will walk down the street.

And buy......something.....something sharp.


Jinksy said...

Absolutely revelled in this poem - must be the shoe thing +pisces+feet.

Heidenstrom said...

Fantastico! who wrote it? and blogg moore !!


Darlene said...

Perhaps those shoes did belong to Vincent. After all, a man who would cut off his ear lobe would wear anything. Good story in your poem.

floreta said...

really cool idea.. if we could step into his shoes.. what would we see?

Mari Meehan said...

C'est Si Bon was playing as I read this and it sure set the mood!

anthonynorth said...

The simplest of items made wonderful and mysterious. Poignant, even.
Loved this.

myrtle beached whale said...

What an interesting interpretation of the painting. I think it amazing and sad that migraines would be the source of his unique perception of the world.

ell said...

The shoes. So much from the shoes. I like that. :)

linda may said...

I enjoyed this and so well suited to the picture of the shoes.

GreenishLady said...

I absolutely loved this piece! I ended up making two posts for Sunday Scribblings this week, because Vincent came up so much, I just had to return. This is beautiful. Thanks for sharing it.

Stan Ski said...

Great combination of words and picture.

Tumblewords: said...

As history would tell, he did find something sharp...I loved this poem, walked along with his thoughts and temporarily in his shoes.

Kat said...

they look like MY shoes.... weary and tired with globe-trotting :))))))

Durward Discussion said...

What an absolutely perfect contribution to Take This Tune. It is a truly evocative poem reflecting an artist's life. Thank you for participating.

Rocky Mountain Woman said...

You've outdone yourself on this one..

I love it...

EG CameraGirl said...

I like the mystery of what might happen next (even though I suspect I know).

Donnie said...

That was wonderful.

Anonymous said...

great post!!!

La said...

Love this amazing poem, Brenda. Van Gogh is my favorite artist. La

Jo said...

well that was amazingly good! what a treat for V day!

Linda Bob Grifins Korbetis Hall said...


you have the most admirable energy in writing for so many beautiful poems at the age of 80.


Susan Anderson said...

Really interesting interpretation through your poem. Nice work!


Susan Anderson said...

PS. Oh, I forgot: I'm pretty late for Alphabe-Thursday this week, so here's my link:

Judie said...

As an artist, I REALLY got way into your poem. You are a gifted woman.

Jenny said...

Incredible writing. Absolutely, totally incredible.

This was such a vivid depiction that it should definitely be included in a volume about his life.

I am astonished at your writing prowess.

You are so incredibly talented.

Thank you for linking this to Alphabe-Thursday.

An A++++++++++++++++++++++++
seems hardly adequate.