To Albrecht Dürer, at the Städel Museum

I am in awe of your talent. Moreover

I am astonished by your output. The detail alone—

curly hair, drapery, skin and bones, grimness

softness, colored flesh and glowing clothes


Were you distracted by the weight of your own oeuvre?

The ponderous scholarship that defined your genius?


But the question I have is did you squint

over those cross-hatchings did you rub your eyes

or curse new commissions? Did your wife suffer

your fits of melancholy or did you put on a brave

face or simply close the workshop door?


There is relief in busyness. Or did you truly

believe every pencil line paint stroke wood cut

important and a great legacy to the world?

Believe in your art because you were praised

or because you had no dark pit waiting

whenever the eye or hand took a rest?

2 thoughts on “To Albrecht Dürer, at the Städel Museum”

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