Sunday, July 7, 2013

Anne Carson / Audubon

Rusty Grakle from Birds of America (1827) by John James Au… | Flickr

by Anne Carson

Audubon perfected a new way of drawing birds that he called his.
On the bottom of each watercolor he put “drawn from nature”
which meant he shot the birds

and took them home to stuff an paint them.
Because he hated the unvarying shapes
of tradicional taxidermy

he built flexible armatures of bent wire and wood
on which he arranged bird skin and feathers─
or sometimes

whole eviscerated birds─
in animated poses.
Not only his wiring but his lighting was new.

Audubon colors dive in through your retina
like a searchlight
roving shadowlessly up and down the brain

until you turn away.
And you do turn away.
There is nothing to see.

Anne Carson
Hombres en sus horas libres
Editorial Pretextos, Valencia, 2007, pp. 42

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