Hands That See

Hands That See

          for Chip

Your hands see
your eyes feel
beyond the real

clouds of blue
skies of white
painting color
into light

dreams awake
the sleeping mind
break the bonds
that keep us blind

you see life  
in grains of sand 
you hold light
within your hand

©Charles Ghigna

The Veiled Nun

The eyes of the artist
unearthed me,
saw through

my maiden marble,
carved me out
of my cold stone,

set me here
for you who stares
at my white eyes

that hide behind this solid veil
that holds your sight
inside my maker’s hands.

"The Veiled Nun" was inspired by the marble sculpture
of the same name by Giuseppe Croft (c. 1860)
that appears in the Corcoran Gallery, Washington, D.C.
and written during my summer residency at the Kennedy Center.

©Charles Ghigna

Love is a Rose

"Charlotte's Heart" by Chip Ghigna
Acrylic on canvas

Rose Garden

         for Debra

Love is a rose,
Each petal a kiss;
I give you my garden
And more than this.

I give you my heart,
A blossom made new
By the love of my life
In the sunshine of you.

And if you permit me
This Valentine's Day,
I give you my garden,
My endless bouquet. 

©Charles Ghigna

"Trees on Fire" acrylic on canvas by Chip Ghigna

Trees On Fire

The trees have held their tongues too long
tonight they sing a dying song
crackle hiss sizzle pop
ashes soaring to the top
yellow red orange cry
confessing secrets to the sky

rings of trees
rings of fire
rings of flame
soaring higher

past the mast
of sailing clouds
past the echoed
cry of crowds

past the last
wisp of pine
hear them whistle
hear them whine

©Charles Ghigna

"Treescape" by Chip Ghigna
Oil on wood


Stare into the face of Nature
Till the forest owns your eyes;
Search beneath the surface shine
Until her depth dispels your lies.

Climb your stare upon her trees
Until you see all shades of green;
Cast your vision past itself
Until your sight becomes the scene.

©Charles Ghigna

"Moon Tree" by Chip Ghigna
Acrylic & polymer on wood

Moon Tree

Moon tree stares up at the night,
wishes upon the passing stars,
holds darkness in her leaves
like a secret,
waits for morning to come
hear her whisper of light.

©Charles Ghigna

Van Gogh and Picasso

"Van Gogh" by Chip Ghigna
Acrylic on canvas, 20" x 16"

A Villanelle for Van Gogh

You saw beyond the blue that filled your eye
And like a child lost in evening prayer,
You brushed against the stars as you passed by.

You spun nocturnal truths out of the sky
In waves of rolling flame upon the air.
You saw beyond the blue that filled your eye.

Your steeple still transcends the hills that try
To touch the golden dreams that held you there.
You brushed against the stars as you passed by.

You searched the other side where shadows lie
In swirling pools of night upon your stare.
You saw beyond the blue that filled your eye.

But Theo and Gachet could only try
To pull you from the depths of your own glare.
You brushed against the stars as you passed by.

Your final stroke fell on a canvas sky
Where dreams once prayed upon the evening air.
You saw beyond the blue that filled your eye.
You brushed against the stars as you passed by.

from The Artist's Magazine ©Charles Ghigna

*  *  *

"Pablo Picasso" by Chip Ghigna
Acrylic on canvas, 14"x11"

Couplets for Picasso

You carried your world in a cubist cage.
You painted its bars with passion and rage.

And when you were lonely with nothing to do,
You stripped all the bars and painted them blue.

Hanging your soul for the life of your sister
In memory’s museum to show how you missed her,

You painted Conchita, the Devil and Christ,
Your trinity set for one blessed price.

You painted and paid for your premature guilt
Till your reds and your greens grew into a quilt

Of beggars and clowns and self-portraits, too,
All without color, except bitter blue.

Your fragmented world was coming undone
And painting to you was no longer fun.

You crawled in your cage and pulled it apart
And beat it back with a broken heart.

And when your rage had painted you,
Your cubist cage was finally through.

from The Artist’s Magazine ©Charles Ghigna