April sunshine has given me the courage to take on the challenge of writing Ekphrastic poems. I have never attempted to translate the emotion from paintings, drawings, sculptures, or other visual works of art into words. The challenge will require me to dig deep to tap into the passions such works of art create inside a person. Most of what I write will be speculative. There will be times when I will place myself into the mind of the artist. Still other times, I will express the emotions I experience gazing at the work of art. If I get creative, I might even tell the story from an element within the work of art. This Ekphrastic poems is based on a painting by Edvard Munch entitled The Scream.
It was a pleasant walk until the bridge
Nature screamed and the sky turned red
My insides quaked and I teetered on the edge.
Darkness filled my mind as the sky bleed
Behind me walked the shadows of my friends
Who were too busy looking over the ridge
To witness how the world suddenly ends
I painted the scream alone in my room
I tried to capture my anxiety
Mingled with a feeling of doom
In the top-left hand corner
I penciled in a mystery
“can only have been painted by a mad man.”
My assessment wasn’t fair,
But I honestly believed it was true.
Until the unfolding of history
Made my Scream the perfect hue
Two World Wars and atomic gloom
Global warming and a pandemic
Place it all in a giant saucepan
These days my vision doesn’t seem so schizophrenic
But modern-day prophets
Are never understood
Because their predictions end in death and despair
Who is Molly Shea?
Molly Shea is an accomplished fictional short story writer from Indiana who writes short stories and novels about a fictional town called Tecumseh. To read more of her short stories and adventures, click here.
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