Gray Suit Coat
It’s remarkable the way, once you’ve started,
almost anything will work: telephone poles,
a pile of wood, a steeple. Farming
implements are lovely, and everything
in the attic, for that matter. Even fabrics,
if displayed correctly, can be effective:
take for example the suit coat
hanging on the chair,
say that the shoulders are square
and the creases sharp, and that the sleeves,
though worn, are spotless. Mention the way
the bow of the hanger lifts the lapels slightly—
all of these details have consequence.
No one will bother about motive
if the beam that you drop rings true
or cuts clean. Move the stepladder around
to the far side of the barn. Only avoid most
adjectives, and the moon.
Now: what about that gray suit coat hanging
on the back of the chair, open at the neck?
-PAINTING, “OUTSIDE THE BARN,” BY GEORGE WINGATE, 5″ x 5″