"What's the matter with you Vincent
Are you all right?What are you gazing at?
Don't you know we're deep in the night?"
Silently he turns to tread lightly past
sun burned paintings that adorn plain walls,
falling into his own room, senses swimming
in sunlight shot through with dark shadows.
Bleached grass waves against sparkling seas.
A boat arrives, the long coated man steps down
"Theo,Theo! come here and look." Crows gather
in stooks, claws grip brown knotted branches on nearby
cypress trees.Dark skinned exotic girls crowd an easel
spread awry, holding an image of a starry sky.
Paul lost in meditative abtraction, dreaming
in front of nature, dreaming of escape.
The Christmas morning train leaves Arles
crossing a carpet of lightly dusted snow.
The boat departs, floating on a violet sea
of moon glinted surfaces.A woman holds
a painting, its intense light invaded by
pigments of black.
Months later in the cool of late evening
she will stare past her master as he paints,
musing on that picture carried from far away,
and come to know how genius succumbed,
its blooms tainted, shrivelling at its roots,
leaving only a muted scream blown through
a field of wheat, where crows circle like vultures
after a desert storm, while a voice calls "Paul,
Paul come home." over and over, as night falls
and darkness shrouds the sun.