Poem Hunter
Still Life
GH (5 3 38 / leipzig)

Still Life

Poem By gershon hepner

Food on the tables,
bread, beer and wine,
still living fables,
silently sign
the life in the cheeses
and partridge and pheasant
more holy than Jesus,
the art of the peasant
whose substance transmuted
by retinal focus
sings essences rooted,
sans hocus or pocus,
as silent as dreaming,
whose plain dramaturgy
is sense that lacks scheming
of scholars or clergy.

Alan Riding ('Demonstrating How Exciting the Still Life Can Be, ' NYT, August 22,1999) reviews a new show at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, 'Still Life: Paintings from the Netherlands,1550-1729'. The first work in the exhibition is Pieter Aersten's 'Meat Pantry of an Inn, With the Virgin Giving Alms' (1551) , which appears to be religious but focuses on red meat, a cow's head and sausages with the Virgin visible only through a window in the distance.


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