Pastorale, 1873

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[Written by Violet Maxwell]

[Image Credits: Pastorale, Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, 1873, oil on canvas. Image accessed through Wikimedia Commons. The Painting is housed at Kelvingrove Art Gallery.]

Pastorale, 1873

“pastoral landscape” they say

tracing hieroglyphics on clean sheets of paper

but you can’t bring yourself to look over your shoulder

the sound betrays it, though

in the end

phantoms, maybe, old 

friends drifting towards the horizon slick with inertia

the grass outlining your shadow is a sarcophagus today.

don’t question it and you may be lucky enough to not find yourself

barricaded from all that endless world out there

& you’re sent reeling back, this endless capacity making you fall to your knees

unceasing light as the organ swells and suddenly

i’m sat there again, ephemeral

with a body like an effigy & a mind that’s catching up

pastoral like a state of mind where you can live beneath sunshine this vivid

pretending that none of it will hurt you 

in the end.


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