On Grünewald’s Altarpiece


As grey-violet mist 
settles on and lifts
from arthritic tree limbs
and the lichens that cling to them,
scalloped lichens,
seashells on trees,
reaching with upturned palms
twisted in pain
to the sea in the sky
and the blue that still lies
behind it,

did You open Your palms
and drown on a tree
that is littered with green
and buds?

*Poem first appeared in Peacock Journal

**Painting by Matthias Grunewald as part of The Isenheim Altarpiece

Devon Kelly