Friday, March 1, 2013

"American Gothic" by Poet John Stone

Our favorite couple...taking a photo op.

American Gothic, 1930 by Grant Wood
American Gothic
John Stone (1998)

Just outside the frame 

there has to be a dog 

chickens, cows and hay 

and a smokehouse

where a ham in hickory

is also being preserved 

Here for all time

the borders of the Gothic window 

anticipate the ribs 

of the house 

the tines of the pitchfork

repeat the triumph 

of his overalls
and front and center

the long faces, the sober lips 

above the upright spines

of this couple 

arrested in the name of art 

These two 

by now

the sun this high

ought to be 

in mortal time 

about their businesses 

Instead they linger
within the patient fabric 

of the lives they wove 

he asking the artist silently 

how much longer

and worrying about the crops 

she no less concerned about the crops

but more to the point just now 

whether she remembered 

to turn off the stove. 

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