Discover more from The Happy Wanderer
The Dogs in Dutch Paintings
A Short Vacation Post
Hello, dear readers! It’s spring break this week, so please enjoy this short post, and see you next week!
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The Dogs in Dutch Paintings, by David Graham
How shall I not love them, snoozing
right through the Annunciation? They inhabit
the outskirts of every importance, sprawl
dead center in each oblivious household.
They’re digging at fleas or snapping at scraps,
dozing with noble abandon while a boy
bells their tails. Often they present their rumps
in the foreground of some martyrdom.
What Christ could lean so unconcernedly
against a table leg, the feast above continuing?
Could the Virgin in her joy match this grace
as a hound sagely ponders an upturned turtle?
No scholar at his huge book will capture
my eye so well as the skinny haunches,
the frazzled tails and serene optimism
of the least of these mutts, curled
in the corners of the world’s dazzlement.
How about you, readers? Are you a dog person? Do you love Dutch paintings? Does ordinary life intrude on your celebrations, to everyone’s surprised delight? Please share your thoughts in the comments!
Speaking of Dutch masters, let’s not forget music! “O Seigneur loué sera,” by Jan Sweelinck, is one of my favorite motets to perform and to hear performed. It was composed over four hundred years ago, and it really dances!