Large Artist Sketchbook 2020: What of Them

You may know that in addition to my poetry I also do art, posted on my blog Claudia McGill and Her Art World. For the next several months I will be posting here a combined art/poetry project, Large Artist Sketchbook 2020.

I fill up sketchbooks with all kinds of art. Some contain images only and some of them I use the images as inspiration for poetry. In these books the image is on one page of the spread and the poetry on the other. This book is set up in this manner.

I’ll show you the image and then add the poem that goes with it. See what you think.

What of Them

Am I safe
even in my own home
Do I dare turn the corner and confront
What? in which room in what hour

Can I trust the floor joists
to hold down the basement?
Do I believe the light bulb
will always obey the switch?
Is the water heater
standing in the corner
truly stolid, maybe,
indifferent, maybe – as it seems
but who can know? Who can know?

The slouching chair edging out of the corner
The dust-laden fading yellow rug
The faces that bloom on the vine
too lush too lurid too luxuriant
scratching at the window glass –
What do they want from me?

The eyes
in the house across the street
What can they see?
What have they seen?

Large Artist Sketchbook 2020 Image 1

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