Mr. Turner

After Carrington Bowles 1724-1793 How to paint flowers

Caroline Kemp

Sea of splashed canvas
Spit of small rain
Weak water light through fog

We missed you in Margate

Fine pencils of camel hair
A shut box
in the big Oh of the colour
Oh for the freedom of the pencil
Let it slip over grease
in the mix
breathing taste
Salt sharp palate
The glow of the colour
sap green free
free flow

We missed you in Margate

Hiss of breath on the shore
like the tide turning
Mr. Turner
coming and going
coming and going
Indian ink
French berries

Caroline Kemp

Caroline Kemp is a Scottish writer, living and working in the North East. She is currently involved in research projects, mainly in Northumbria University around Pathways to Recovery. She has been published in journals, including The Journal of Progressive Sciences, Rethink, Material, in various Forward Press anthologies, and on websites including the tribute to Julia Darling.

Her current work in progress is a translation of her German grandmother's diary which begins on August 1st, 1914. The war diary is juxtaposed with a present day reflections, incorporating prose/poetry prompted by family history across different times.

Mr. Turner was part of the Found Poetry challenge and the painterly words partly came from Carrington Bowles' tips on how to paint flowers. It also includes Caroline Kemp's own words, which is not strictly acceptable in a 'found' poem.

The images from the recent film Mr. Turner also inspired the poem.

It is one of a series of poems, in her collection, rather like The World and his Wife, which features poems on various artists and writers. It a little slice of her take on their lives.

Caroline Kemp loves all forms of art, particularly painting and often uses ekphrasis as a starting point. The poems include Degas, Magritte, Rothko, and Kahlo.

She wanted to transform the creative experience of paint and the power of colour from the canvas on to the page. The task was to make the words resonate like the actual paintings.

Caroline's previous Poem of the Month was April in the Ha Ha; a more recent poem is Young man descending.

Poem of the Month full list

Follow the link for a list of other Poems of the Month.

Mr. Turner © 2015 Caroline Kemp: used with permission.
Copyright of this poem remains with the poet: please do not download or republish without permission.