Saturday, February 4, 2012

Dorothea Tanning 1910-2012

Here you are as a baby loved by a mother
Here you are as a girl in white pinafore
Here you are as a young sylph kneeling on the beach in San Francisco
Here dressed in a coat with a fur collar on the rooftops of New York
The city you will conquer with your art
Here you are dreaming in the desert
with the white haired man you will love
for thirty four years
Here you are alone without him but you are still painting
You could still wear antlers and leaves if you chose
And sometimes you still smile
Now over a century old you leave us
While I roam the museum gallery hung with your breasts, your purses, your roses and phantoms of roses
Here I am in snake skin leggings with a man who only sometimes holds my hand
grateful that I can still see
Hoping for half your years, half your gifts, half your love
Sustained by what you have left behind
Hoping I will do the same for some young woman
With blood dripping from her hands onto the page


  1. When worlds collide: I feel grounded in my own body and existence. It is as if the muses have come together in their dance. Favorite all time poet/author pays homage to favorite all time visual artist. Thank you, Ms. Block, and rest peacefully, Ms. Tanning.

    1. You have already done that for me.
      Blessings and Love,

  2. my grandmother passed away two weeks ago, and was also a painter and lovely woman. this poem feels so relevant, especially the line about half of her gifts. each of my sisters and cousins have set a new goal to learn one of the many skills our granny had. and only with all of us together do we equal her. thank you.

  3. Hello. remarkable job. I did not imagine this. This is a remarkable story. Thanks!
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