Amsterdam II : Scarring the Plate

—at the Rembrandt House Museum

We walked into etched graven acid bath plates of cut up copper in the house decked out with wandering poison peddlers three trees Jesus cloudy skies whose light in tender metal lines breaks through one two three angels consoling a risen pissing beggar Christ on the copse to Golgotha cutting softly through the plate in outlying canals by which a Sephardic doctor reads solemnly under a gathering storm a skull a windmill a bridge to Egypt where the family holiday night donkey ride takes us to a fiddling husband ragged wife team begging the dog eyed Jesus soulful simian banker who sports a Rembrandt gray van chiaroscuro beard dimpled chin Rijn making printed paper breathe with horny satyrs climbing feminine thighs and bearded old men with eyes streaming shadows in which dusty dogs lick themselves all for love in this world assaulted by the marching armless clock in a bankrupt studio auction sold down to the bones of wrinkle-eyed compassion but still sending the chosen few to copper pauper paper apotheoses in the kingdom of acid graving slashed drypoint needle scars an apartment needing light preferably northern exposure but we are too late for the artist believing in this world under the sign of love swinging like a Dutch door gone fishing for over-priced omelets at Rembrandt Corner Café where you sketched canal boats bobbing up and down the water flowing stop please water waiter artist portrait maker who said let me take your photograph and now kiss one way to get a good tip do what you can on a cold day with the wind blowing napkins away.

About the author

Rimas Uzgiris is a poet and translator whose work has appeared in Barrow Street, Hudson Review, Paris Review, Poetry Review and other journals. He…

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Issue 17 · March 2013

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