Art and Poetry II

Here is another painting and a poem I wrote inspired by it.

Burne-Jones, Beguiling of Merlin

--Edward Burne-Jones, The Beguiling of Merlin (1874)

The Beguiling of Merlin
(after a painting by Edward Burne-Jones)

Bare-footed, she slithers above him,
his book of magic held like a platter,
a phallic body, feline fingers,
phallic nose, feminine lips,

her neck an enormous temptation,
snakes on her head, her dress a swirl--
blue-green skin, sadistic red hair:
she's the one for him.

Gray-haired Merlin has lost his beard,
sick with disappointment: gaunt, weak
tomcat eyes, a young man's fingers,
he wants her to want him again.

She took his wisdom & will--
excitement in the forest,
the overwhelming white flowers.
The hawthorn tree envelops him.

--from The Age of the Mother
(Laughing Coyote, 1992,
Copyright © Clifton Snider)


Back to Art and Poetry.
Go to Art and Poetry III for "Epithalamion," by Gerard Manley Hopkins.
Go to my poem about Christina Rossetti.
Go to my poem about D. H. Lawrence.
To The Cave of Niaux.
To Mountain Lion poem.
To Native Themes in Poetry and Art.
To New Age.
To The Shalako in Poetry and Art.
To Poetry and Criticism.
To "Le Mont Saint-Michel."
Read about my latest books of poetry, The Alchemy of Opposites and Aspens in the Wind.
Read about my new novels, Wrestling with Angels: A Tale of Two Brothers, Loud Whisper, and Bare Roots.
Read about my early books of poetry.


Page last revised: 22 August 2009