Rembrandt’s Late Self-Portraits
You are confronted with yourself. Each year The pouches fill, the skin is uglier. You give it all unflinchingly. You stare Into yourself, beyond. Your brush’s care Runs with self-knowledge. Here Is a humility at one with craft. There is no arrogance. Pride is apart From this self-scrutiny. You make light drift The way you want. Your face is bruised and hurt But there is still love left. Love of the art and others. To the last Experiment went on. You stared beyond Your age, the times. You also plucked the past And tempered it. Self-portraits understand, And old age can divest, With truthful changes, us of fear of death. Look, a new anguish. There, the bloated nose, The sadness and the joy. To paint’s to breathe, And all the darknesses are dared. You chose What each must reckon with.
Notting Hill next reading 17th May, Travel Bookshop, 7.00pm [email protected] 07872564888