Autumn Sky Poetry . . . Number 23 . . .

Portrait of a Woman Revealing Her Breasts

     by Mary Meriam
     art: Jacopo Robusti (Tintoretto)’s “Portrait of a Woman Revealing Her Breasts.” 1570. Oil on canvas. Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid, Spain.

Sensing Tintoretto’s brushes

on her breasts, tender, luscious,

she looks away and faintly blushes.

Can we understand the deal

she made to model and reveal?

Was it for love? Oh, let me feel

this love, then let my fingers slide

along each folded, flowing side

of parted dress and salty tide,

until I touch her strands of pearls.

Now tickled by her auburn curls

and wavy locks, her image twirls

an ocean where I cannot swim

and flailing, drown. Here on the slim

shore of sound, I sigh and limn.


Mary Meriam's poems have recently appeared in The New York Times, The Gay & Lesbian Review, Measure, and Sentence. She is the author of The Countess of Flatbroke and The Poet's Zodiac, and the editor of Lavender Review.

“Portrait of a Woman Revealing Her Breasts” first appeared in Phati'tude Literary Magazine.


© 2011 Mary Meriam