Sunday 3 May 2020

Rutger Kopland: 'Self-portrait as Paul the Apostle'


I look into the portrait and it begins
to live – before my eyes the gaze with which
he looks at me now slowly changes

it briefly smiles – as if making excuses
for being there and for the questions
it evokes in me

it then grows somewhat pensive – with a hint
of indulgence, of doubt
of gentle mockery

perhaps though it is disappointment too
the melancholy of a man who looks into himself
and sees how much is past

was this what Rembrandt saw when
looking in the mirror where
he sought himself?

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