Tuesday, April 11, 2017

ARTSPEAK! Portraits poem "Promise"

Hello and Happy National Poetry Month! Here it is, day 11 of ARTSPEAK!: Portraits, my National Poetry Month poem-a-day project, during which I am looking, listening with my spirit ear, and asking these subject to share with me their secrets.

But first: be sure to check out Ramona's line of our 2017 Progressive Poem over at Pleasures from the Page. I love how our poem is progressing!

Here are the ARTSPEAK! Portraits poems so far:

10. "Portrait of a Writer" after Oskar Maria Graf by Georg Schrimpf
9. "Speaking of the Weather" after Profile of a Woman by Fujishima Takeji
8. "Happiness" after Self-Portrait with Straw Hat by Elisabeth Vigee le Brun
7. "Virginia, Sitting for a Portrait" after Portrait of Virginia (Little Girl) by Frida Kahlo
6. "Paint-by-Number" after Portrait of a Woman by Alexei von Jawlensky
4. "I Am" after The White Cloud, Head Chief of the Iowas by George Catlin
3. "What If?" after Portrait of Camille Roulin by Vincent van Gogh
2. "The Lady Confesses" after Portrait of a Lady with Mask and Cherries by Benjamin Wilson
1. "Mona Lisa in Love" after Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci

For today's poem I have selected an enchanting subject! Who doesn't love a baby? And what baby doesn't love rhyme? Here's what this little girl said to me:

- after “Portrait of a Little Italian Girl” by Maria KrØyer
Mama says
I must sit
  for a bit
  a little bitty bit

and if I
don't throw a fit
  not even
  a little bitty fit

we will get
  in the garden
  to dig for a bit

and to watch
  the butterflies flit.

- Irene Latham


  1. Oh so cute, and she's mesmerized sitting still, remembering that promise. I recently took the girls to have their silhouettes made as a surprise for their parents and wondered if Imi (5) could sit still enough for him. But they both sat so still, so seriously, just like this little girl. It was a delight to see them, and to see this man create with his tiny scissors. Love this, Irene.

  2. I remember sitting for a portrait when I was 12. It's easier to sit still at that age. This poem has a definite child's voice in it, for a bit.

  3. Wonderful reward for sitting for a bit! I love the serious expression on her face. Maybe she's thinking about those butterflies!

  4. So sweet! I want to hug this sweetie...and the rhythm. Like Linda, I had our children's silhouettes done and more recently, portraits. There is something about sitting for an artist, something magical. This word-portrait made me want to reach in and touch her. :) x


Your thoughts?