A Collective Poem for a Painting

On Friday, Meagan Estep, graduate intern in Education, led a large group of visitors on a special edition of our daily Spotlight tours. This Personal Response tour had the group enthusiastically exchanging observations and ideas in a series of activities focused on a few permanent collection favorites. In one activity, we split into groups, each writing a sentence about a selected painting and then combining our sentences to form a poem about the work. Here are two of our creations:

 

Marc Chagall’s The Dream

Marc Chagall, The Dream, 1939. Gouache on paper, 20 9/16 x 26 3/4 in. The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C. Acquired 1942.

Marc Chagall, The Dream, 1939. Gouache on paper, 20 9/16 x 26 3/4 in. The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C. Acquired 1942.

 

A dark night of the Russian soul
Love in poverty
Tenderness amidst uncertainty
A feathery softness
Brings light to the darkness

 

 

 

 

 

Vincent van Gogh’s Entrance to the Public Gardens in Arles

Vincent van Gogh, Entrance to the Public Gardens in Arles, 1888. Oil on canvas, 28 1/2 x 35 3/4 in. The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C. Acquired 1930.

Vincent van Gogh, Entrance to the Public Gardens in Arles, 1888. Oil on canvas, 28 1/2 x 35 3/4 in. The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C. Acquired 1930.

 

I reach inward and consider my thoughts
To and fro
To and fro
Green and gold surround me
In a warm place
Sculpted Sky
Blue feelings rise up
Days go by, life unfolds