The Law of Faces

Identi-kit Portrait: Composite #9 by Randi Trinka, 1984
© All rights reserved


In the commerce of faces,
one law: the image fades
inward from its edges.
The end of the image
is eyes.

Willy-nilly strangers
begin, they transact a gaze
and are bound by its terms,
the border between them
negotiates down
to the thinnest filament
that would withstand

trespass. The end
is eyes.

Let us begin again.
Our terms already set,
let us now together tend
to the one task left.

Invent me.

–M. Salomon


~ by matt on 30 May 2008.

5 Responses to “The Law of Faces”

  1. It’s good – and rare – to read a poem about a painting that is the equal of the painting.

  2. Rosemary, thanks very much for your comments. So, is there some characteristic of paintings (or poems) that might work to make this so, in general? M

  3. It is wonderful to read your own works here! This certainly is an ‘image-instigated’ poem. In my view, the poem not only compliments the image but moves it forward. Your words leave open the door to a future and a hope for which I do not sense from the image itself.

  4. As always, Scotti, I really appreciate your thoughtful and perceptive comments. You are absolutely correct–this poem was literally a response to Randi Trinka’s painting (about which I knew everything but her title for it). Randi also did a painting on another poem of mine which I’ll post here later in the year (it’s about autumn). Thanks again for visiting and sharing your insights! m

  5. I’d sure like to say hello to the Artist, Randi Trinka. Thanks

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Natalie E. Illum...

is a poet, performer and disability activist. Bring her stumbling to your city.

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