The last judgment of
Your tats, your fights, your copious addictions,
the jokes that your liver = your name,
the sordid truths behind the tabloid fictions,
the comprehensive self-abuse of fame,
the cliché of the tragic prima donna,
the press anticipating your demise,
your overwhelming lack of public honour—
there’s none of that in your defiant eyes.
Your talent overcame any objection,
your chaos just a feature of your style;
your voice was an unprincipled perfection,
your soul in sound; now your laconic smile
demands from us the verdict, finally—
what have we done to live so honestly?
One of five poems written by Godfrey Rust in response to paintings at the BEAT (Borough of Ealing Art Trail) exhibit at St John's Church, West Ealing in September 2019.
The painting is entitled Amy, by the artist and © Kim McLaughlin. Another poem in response to this painting was written by Joe Kelly.
Poem © Godfrey Rust 2019, firstname.lastname@example.org. See here for permissions.