Making Paint

I wrote this poem about the transcendental joy of creating art – and meaning – from handmade paint:

Crushed lapis;
pulverised azurite;
ground malachite;
powdered ochres.
You are deconstructed,
broken down,
so that you can be made
whole again.

Terra rosa, terre verte:
colours of the earth
take form on my canvas.
This is the soil, this is the grass:
is art imitating nature,
Or nature imitating art?

Like the paint I love to make,
I take my essence apart
so that I can put it back together
in new and novel ways.
For to be something,
I must first be nothing,
to be reinvented,
lovingly coaxed
into existence.

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