Geoffrey Long
Tip of the Quill: Archives
April Showers, Champs Elysees, Paris, 1888.

Childe Hassam, April Showers, Champs Elysees, Paris, 1888
Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC

She is caught momentarily transfixed,
her hurried errand abruptly paused
at the sight of a flock of men in the rain.
The horse-drawn carriage is dark bedecked
with a bristling cluster of black umbrellas,
a melancholy parade for a soul unknown.
There is no music, no drum, no chant
aside from the clop clop of the horses' hooves,
punctuated by an occasional splash
of puddles, or tears, or color –
the flower in her bonnet the only red
in a day given over to more somber hues.

(Context: this is one of the poems I've written based on works of art in museums. – GL)

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