The Stained Glass Painter
The School of Painting
Workshop of Printer
Death the Copperplate Printer
I turn Christ's cross till it turns Catherine's wheel,
Ixion's wheel becoming Andrew's cross,
All four being windlass ways
To press my truth full home, force you to feel
The brevity of your days,
Your strength's, health's, teeth's, desire's and memory's loss.
The bitten plate, removed from its Dutch Bath
Of mordants, has been set below a screw
That will enforce my will
Like the press that crushed Isaiah's grapes of wrath.
My lightest touch can kill,
My costly first impressions can subdue.
Slowly I crank my winch, and the bones crack,
The skull splits open and the ribs give way.
Who, then, thinks to endure?
Confess the artistry of my attack;
Admire the fine gravure,
The trenched darks, the cross-hatching, the pale gray.
This is no metaphor. Margaret Clitheroe,
A pious woman, even as she prayed
Was cheated of her breath
By a court verdict that some years ago
Ordered her pressed to death.
I'm always grateful for such human aid.
– Anthony Hecht (1996)
Artist copying a painting of Christ
|Carel Allard (publisher) after Jean Berain|
Stage Costume for Sculptor
|Anthonie de Winter after Caspar and Jan Luyken|
Printmaker in Studio
Engraving tools with Studio vignette
etching, engraving (book-illustration for the Encylcopédie)
Death the Painter
Snub-nosed, bone-fingered, deft with engraving tools,
I have alone been given
The powers of Joshua, who stayed the sun
In its traverse of heaven.
Here in this Gotham of unnumbered fools
I have sought out and arrested everyone.
Under my watchful eye all human creatures
Convert to a still life,
As with unique precision I apply
White lead and palette knife.
A model student of remodelled features,
The final barber, the last beautician, I.
You lordlings, what is Man, his blood and vitals,
When all is said and done?
A poor forked animal, a nest of flies.
Tell us, what is this one
Once shorn of all his dignities and titles,
Divested of his testicles and eyes?
The First Idea of a Grand Historical Picture
(recumbent painter with eyes closed)
|Thomas Shotter Boys|
Atelier of Richard Parkes Bonington in Paris
Artist standing at easel
|James McNeill Whistler|
Portrait of Walter Sickert
Profile portrait of Walter Sickert
Poems from the archives of Poetry (Chicago)