Another old poem, from a college class where we had to pick a painting and write to it. So I went into character.

1991.55_1a wheat

“Wheat” by Thomas Hart Benton

This ain’t no oldy-moldy picture of
Some holier than thou Madonna looking
Down her pretty eye-talian nose at me and
Lots of other plain spoken common folk strollin’
Through this-here museum on a rainy day in ol’
Kansas City

It ain’t no picture of some pretentious French
café, frogs drinkin’ weird coffee from tiny cups,
wearin’ those funny striped shirts and purple berets
livin’ at night and sleepin ‘til noon, y’know most of ‘em
ain’t never been up early enough to see the sun rise slow and
steady over a wide-open plain, if they even have such things in

It ain’t no mumbo-jumbo hogwash picture full of crazy colors
that don’t make sense all thrown together like somethin’ I mighta
done myself back in Mrs. Beidelman’s first-grade class, the one where
we learned to fingerpaint and I grabbed Mary’s blouse – she was pretty
even then – and got paint all over her chest and had to stand in the corner,
But anyways, I bet the guy who did this lives in New York City and knows all
the right people, so the rest of the country has to stare at his navel gazin’ notions
every time we set foot in a stuffy old museum, which Lord-willin’, ain’t terribly often
since it don’t rain too much in
These parts.

No, this here
Is a pretty picture
A picture of wheat
Plain and simple
Golden shocks
Rows and rows of ‘em
Each stalk a little bit different
Bendin’ in the wind
But still standin’ strong
I like that
It reminds me of Mary
Rest her soul
She was so young
I wish the rows could go on forever
But I know it’s just a picture
I remember bein’ a little boy
On my granddaddy’s farm
Runnin’ through the wheat
Runnin’ after Mary…
This here
Is a pretty picture

Published by Doug Hoekstra

Father, wordsmith, musician, creative.

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