Monday, February 7, 2011

Poem: The Challenge

The Challenge

The violin sits on the table,
the once perfect wood stripped of varnish,
its raw essence rough against your hands,
more real for it's texture,
two hundred years of history at your fingertips,

scars spider over it's face, like your own,
like your soul, each line
deep and telling,
mysterious markers, character

that can be seen and felt,
but still somehow,
leaving the story untold,
a thing to be wondered at.

The challenge is not
how to turn this distressed instrument
perfect and beautiful. That is easy,
a mere conjouring of sandpaper
and time erasing away the truth and struggle,

with gloss and shellac.


The challenge is to save it's essence
while rebuilding it's strength,
letting the scars enhance it's beauty
while never, ever
destroying the truth,

until what remains
is beauty of another kind,
historic and new
all at once.


This poem began to be about a table, but the idea of refinishing an instrument became more compelling and complete some how, and so... here it is. The picture is of a violin in Venice, not perfect, but perfectly beautiful. You can click on it for a larger version


No comments: