Monday, November 12, 2012

Ekphrastic Poetry from Art on the Move

Did you know that poetry or songs based on art are called "ekphrastic poems?"  Think of Don McLean's song "Vincent" or Green Day's "Boulevard of Broken Dreams." Both of these songs are inspired by famous painting, and therefore they are "ekphrastic." The poem below is based on Early Light by Vincent Ceglia from the Art on the Move program.

In the following poem, note how the ambiguous imagery in the poem inspires clear revelations in the poet.  Also observe his excellent use of personification.

The Colors of War

Early Light,
Blues, yellows, and orange,
The weak cyan and turquoise,
Retreat in defeat,
As the deep blue rushes onwards in protest,
Smothering the feeble armies of green and yellow.
The smoke clears,
And the fighting resumes.
The air is filled with the sounds of battle,
The ground beneath the soldier’s feet,
Begins to rattle.
Fallen warriors,
Are buried under fresh new paint.
New colors emerge,
In the shadows of others.
The soldiers stand still, steady, strong, and ready.
Red blood of the fallen warriors,
Oozes down to the bottom of the battlefield.
The yellow army,
Is engulfed in blue,
And the colors blend to create a new hue.
Green, orange, red, blue, and yellow,
Finally settle as the fight comes to a close,
And the wet paint dries.
The masterpiece is finally completed,
And the artist stands proud and tall, admiring his work of art.
Blues, yellows, and orange fight.
Early Light.

by Dylan J.

Early Light by Vincent Ceglia

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