Writing About Art

Entry by: Lainie Senechal

4th June 2015
The Last Paintings of Claude Monet

In a room, with an artist friend,
surrounded by large, liquid pools
of floating waterlilies,
everywhere we turn
they are drifting: placid, serene.
Some bathed in afternoon's golden light,
Others rest in evening's orchid stillness,
some barely visible through morning mists.
We examine the images closely;
only layer upon layer
of thick, dry paint.
When we sit back, it flows
down the canvas, off the wall,
immersing us in its
peaceful, dreamy world.
We float through sunlight,
through purple haze,
into early twilight of dawn.

For this was his final gift,
after achieving wealth, fame;
not stopping to rest,
to enjoy his last days in the garden;
he was a painter, driven
to make one more bold statement.
His life spent mastering the pond,
with various bits of pigments,
he covered broad expanses of canvas,
creating work, not for the voyeurs,
but for us to accompany him;
to drift like clouds, like lotuses
through perpetual summer.
No longer separate-artist from viewer-
we are now subject,
for he has placed us
on the water beside his lilies.