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Self Portrait

It starts as a want, a need

an itch that has to be scratched

and the rest of the world fades away.


Without thinking,  

‘Am I dressed for this?’

‘Should I be doing something else?’

You sweep away the clutter


Eyes closed you reach in deep for the bones,

tracing their contours with your mind,

drawing them to the surface

so you may lay them out upon the paper.


Millimetre by millimetre,

mark by mark,

adjusting position and form.

Stroking the canvas

until the briefest elements of life appear

and its desire to be nurtured.


Mixing cadmium red, and yellow,

Titanium white, a hint of ultramarine blue

you pull flesh from the paint,

nuances of colour, round peaches and pinks

plump reds, sunken purples.


Layer upon layer you caress the bones

until she appears

emerging from the canvas

eyes watching you

asking to be made whole.

45 views8 comments


Both picture and poem are stunning!


Soulful and powerful- particularly like the evocative description of the colours


A painting in poetry then poetry in a painting, both are wonderful pieces

Replying to

Thank you Darrell.


Unknown member
Feb 10

Great Ali! How good to be able to do that. Paint a picture of your whole ❤️ Well done!!!

Replying to

Thank you


Thank you Stephen and the fifth line is now sorted.🙂

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