CHRISTMAS REPRODUCTION

Posted by Admin on Thursday, 25th May 2006, 00:00

The fifth ‘Old Master’ – one more card
to set apart from trite displays
of candles, coaches, choristers,
St Matthew’s Magi, camel borne,
and scenes of cosy domesticity
with iridescent windows, fireside cats.
Another name to place beside Murillo,
Albertinelli, Brueghal, and Vermeer.
Van Avercamp:-
How truthfully this painter took to canvas
the winters of his time – so faithfully
that hypothermia informs each brush-stroke.
His skaters move, his gossips stand,
sedately in the blizzard’s aftermath.
No high-jinks brave, no Pickwickian warmth
defies the rigour of his ice-locked
riverscape.
Conditioned by severity, his folk
disport themselves with dignity; aware
that winter yet may win – and winning make
demands the very old, the very young, will
pay.

 

T. C. Hudson 1976

© T. C. Hudson.

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