Conversing with the Masters


When Picasso found himself old, twisted and torn, he paused for a rest at Madoura Pottery in 1953, where Picasso began molding clay, and a potter by the name of Jacqueline, whom he finally wed in 1961.

When he was entertaining friends at dinner in 1973, with these last words, he pleaded,
“Drink to me, drink to my health, you know I can’t drink any more.” He died.
She shot herself in 1986, probably thinking of him.

Picasso’s Paintings
Picasso’s abstract paintings fill my head with fascinating narratives, he ran the females in his pack with wounds, he should have felt and dealt with when he was young, but then painted them with feelings of mastery and omnipotence, his favorite model was a pretty ballerina named Olga, his girl in the mirror,


I hear her begging to be space between Picasso’s ears,
I can see her elongated limbs and bulging breasts reaching out for him,
pride guides his hands around her 22 inch waist,
I see him loving his women separately but tasting them all as one,
turning his backside to each after a cataclysmic orgasm,
he painted torn pieces of himself in blues, reds and yellows.

Girl Playing the Tambourine
Bazooka, I see Picasso’s done it again,
painting Olga dancing and playing the Tambourine, 
a collage of many sensual parts, a mystery to explore,
she’s dancing to an unheard melody in Picasso’s head, 
it’s magical getting to know her in a cubic sense,
even though she looks kind of odd to us,
Picasso thinks she’s perfectly mapped,
a massive tragedy of parts,
recalling them with an insanity he never-ever sought,
He could do nothing more or less,
then to reconstruct his women as he knew best.

Picasso’s Women
I caught the glimpse and gleam of
Picasso’s women…in my mirror, each
Invading my soul with curiosity,
sadness and fear, all of us like
stubborn toddlers, sitting in highchairs,
waiting to be fed life, a little excited,
a little not,
we traveled with dark glasses of
misconception and misery, our
faces wet with sweat and tears, our
egos plump,
each of us moving from one world to
another, our hands cutting the air into
magic masks of unforeseen
circumstances we hide behind,
each of us craving and loathing the
pain of the perpetual wounds of living
and loving.

Les Demoiselles
Picasso gathered five sisters of
prostitution into a collage of
strategic cubes of memento mori,
the death rattle of jilted lovers,
painting them as savages,
with angular and disjointed
some hiding behind masks,
while his hand-eye coordination
painted them all into the future
with ambiguous affection.

Van Gogh & Friends
Oh, Starry Night
There is beauty, bravery,
and achievement in Van Gogh’s
Starry Night, splendidly swabbing
his canvas tenderly, taking his own sweet
time, while gifting each air pocket
imaginary wings fashioned from a cool
night light, while the small village
slept below, he educated his eyes by
surfing the clouds, we educated ours by
studying the merits of his lines of
of composition, form and color,
trying to lock in his essence,
with his soul hanging like a
tadpole man in each artistic
rendering. where we go to breathe
in the darkness of all the idiocy,
we poets fall heir to today.

Terror and Mercy
I feel like I’m disappearing,
thought Picasso,
one painting at a time,
I’m drawing on empty, too many
paths and detours,
followed and unfollowed,
an agitation blowing through me,
like a cruel wind,
between the rapture of my brush
and the dread of being misunderstood,
between groans and grunts,
and a thicket of lingering passions,
hand-picked, polished and packed for
delivery at my door by unseen hands,
these things I do not profess to
understand, my life pieced together
laboriously with terror and mercy.

Aphrodite & Venus
and all Want-to-Be
Marilyn Monroes
Some call us man’s first cultured pearls,
goddesses first birthed from castrated genitals,

our all-seeing eyes of violet blue with traces of emerald green,
and our hair is like soft wet straw, with traces of wild flowers.

  1. Avatar of Nancy Duci Denofio
    Nancy Duci Denofio says

    Joyce, I enjoyed your writing – and it brought me back to a collection of work I do have sitting around when I visited nearly all the large museums in the country, stood in front of each painting and wrote about them, through my eyes, what I saw as it stared back at me. Thank you so, Sincerely Nancy

    1. Avatar of Joyce White
      Joyce White says

      Thanks Nancy. I like to say that my poetry is like a conversation between two pieces of art. Joyce

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