It was to be a most extraordinary day
experiencing the Van Gogh Exhibition

Pam and I walked through the exhibition doors
and were instantaneously flung into a burst of colorful perfusion
and the voice of Edith Piaf singing
Non Je Ne Regrette Rien
(I Do Not Regret Anything)

i really don’t know what i was expecting
coming to this event
but all of a sudden
i was in it

the initial impact
so overwhelming
that I broke into tears

the musical realizations of
Luca Longobardi
was a washing rush of beauty
and a masterful partenaire
to this visual spectacle

the imagination of the creator
Massimiliano Siccardi and his team
produced a transcendent expression
sailing far beyond the paintings

i found myself walking through
the tangled mind of vincent van gogh
in an emotionally intense
kaleidoscope of sight and sound

up until the age of twenty seven
he was an art and book dealer
language teacher
lay preacher and missionary worker

though throughout all his life
he was constantly floundering
save the support of his brother Theo

Van Gogh was a confluence of
once religious fervor
romantic casualty
critics rejection
psychotic delusion
teeming unhappiness
and finally
suicide by gunshot

these the staples of his existence
tucked into a short thirty seven years

prolific in the last ten years as a painter
he began with drawings and watercolors
then later oils

during his time in the sanitarium
Van Gogh was painting on the average
one piece every two days
and sometimes one a day

Starry Night was completed in his days there
a painting that is worth 100 million dollars today

Van Gogh sold only one painting in his lifetime
The Red Vineyard

this exhibit of Van Gogh’s work
was constantly
swirling around you
a gallery of bi-polar sensibility
on the walls
and the floor

blackbirds flapping their wings
blades of a windmill moving

sunflowers and potato eaters
self portraits
and that starry night

there were foreboding scenes
which spoke of the darkness
that consumed him

then the relief of
still life
café terraces

and flowered scenes
in a palette of
vivid yellows
and orange
blue and green
with some red

the attendees were athrill
at the wonder they were witnessing
sounds of excited young children

one of these little ones
just into the up and running phase of her life
came bustling by us
with mother in close pursuit

suddenly she lay down on the floor
of bright blinking lighting
eyes wide open
arms swishing
as like angel wings in snow
little fingers
touching the magical floor
Looking up in wonder

It was a storybook moment
the juxtaposition of this massively tragic brilliance
shining down on the beauty of innocence

that was the Van Gogh Exhibition

A poem by Greg Nelson
© 2022 by Poppie’s Hallel
(BMI. Admin. by Amplified Administration)

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