Responder: Jennifer Granat – Portrait of a Woman with Fruit and Pearls (SOLD)
Initiator Author: Jim Gunshinan
Writing Title: Portrait of a Woman from the Gardens in Egypt in the First Century
Responder Artist: Jennifer Granat
Artwork Title: Portrait of a Woman with Fruit and Pearls
Size: 9 x 12″
Medium: Acrylic on board
She looks at us with dark brown eyes
and rose lips applied with beeswax
on linden wood.
She looks as if nothing were between us—
not 1900 years, not nations being born
not war and famine, millions of lovers
the invention of the printing press
Newtonian and then quantum mechanics.
She could be my neighbor. I would love it
if she moved into the empty apartment
across the hall.
She seems to know something but is not
telling. Maybe it was the painter
who said, Stay still for another minute
for the wax is cooling or maybe
she was in love with the painter and maybe
wasn’t married to the painter and
ready to burst with love and passion
for the painter. Or her children were bumping
her knees, feeling neglected.
She knows something but is not saying it.
Maybe that nothing will change
in 1900 years
and she is looking at me, at us
with compassion. Hoping that we can adorn
ourselves with lovely pearls like hers
that there are still bread and children
and that people still find joy
in each other’s bodies, that
war has ceased and everyone
feels cherished by someone. In this portrait
affixed to her coffin
nothing stands between
her eyes and mine. I feel that we will meet
and I will have to answer for my life.
© 2023 Jim Gunshinan
Out of stock