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Passions in Poetry

Lady in Red - - Woman in White

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Sunshine
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0 posted 08-13-2000 08:29 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to Submit your Poem to Passions   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

Lady in Red ~ Woman in White


From the marble bench on the north side of the main hall of the City's Museum, I was a watcher of people.  That was my only intellectual stimulus.  Otherwise, my single value was that of ornamental art.  Clothed in a Chinese style, Chinese red dress of the 1960's and matching Chinese red heels, my only purpose to be present, here in the City's Museum, was to strike an inanimate pose against a black background.  I was to repose on a slate gray marble bench there on the north side of the main hall of the City's Museum and be "inanimate art."

Paid an inordinate sum of money, my responsibility to the artistic nature of the creator's piece was to be "The Lady in Red", mannequin-style, Saturday through Thursday.  No one really noticed when I struck a new pose every fifteen minutes - that was one thing the City Museum visitors were not to notice.

But during those days of artful poses, I observed many things.  None struck me so much as the gentleman in the dapper suit.  To say a gentleman is dapper in today's world is archaic at best, but that was the only word that came to mind as I watched him move carefully in the City's Museum, and he came for only one thing.

At the south end of the marble floor in the main hall of the City's Museum stood the sculpture of the "Woman in White."  Of cold white marble, the artisan had sculpted bone and skin and drape of Grecian dress just so; that unless you touched her, you thought you could feel the warmth of the character emanate from her stone's soul.

And she is why he came.  As a piece of art she was of true inert marble, unmoving, of no breath, of unwilling flesh, of no response.  So unlike what was directly across from her.  He came only for her.

Life size, she stood five foot seven inches.  I knew this because one night, after hours, when the City's Museum guests had departed, I strode over to her, to look into her face, to see what it was the dapper gentleman saw in her.  We, she and I, looked directly into each other's eyes, hers of white, mine of hazel.  So, she was, like me, five foot seven.  Her dimensions were such that I supposed she could have worn the Chinese red dress.  And in that, that being all, was the only way in which we were similar.

But let me take you back to the dapper gentleman.  Always dressed in a white broadcloth shirt with a lemon-cream colored sweater vest, over which a soft gray suit jacket and slacks graced his lean form, he would arrive, always on a Monday morning.  Invariably his arrival time with the opening of the doors at 10:00 a.m. Although the very slowest time of the week, that was his arrival time, rain or shine.  One could set the City Museum's clock by his arrival.  He would stride in with such grace, the only noise that of his gold handled cane, which he used most dexterously.

The main entryway was on the west side of the City's Museum, huge ornate porticos that balanced heavy on their pedestals.  He would walk in and turn to the right, heading straight for the "Woman in White."  As this was a museum that allowed for interactive art, patrons were allowed to give and receive tactile impressions as well as visual impressions.  One expected to watch guests as they would move past various objet de art, deftly touching each artisan's reason for living.  But he would not touch, nor even observe, other artists' works.  Instead, he strode directly toward her, the "Woman in White," as if on a mission.

And no one could be as tactilely giving as he.   Walking slowly up to the "Woman in White", one could see him slow his step, as if gathering her within his field of vision, taking all of her in, almost as reverently as if she were a religious icon, the Virgin Mother.  Then, when he was but arm's length from her, he would inhale deeply as if she carried about her a perfume that only he could inhale.  One could hear him take in three, four, five deep breaths.

Slowly, artfully, I moved my position to the far edge of the slate gray marble bench for my next fifteen minutes of mannequin pose, unnoticed by the dapper gentleman.

From this position I could now watch as his right hand slowly reached out, touching her left marble wrist, encircling his fingers around her wrist gently, as if to feel her pulse.  Most of my view was obscured by the gentleman's back, but I could see enough to know he would then slide his fingertips up the Woman in White's bare inner arm, for clothed as she was in a Grecian styled dress, no sculptured fold of dress covered her left arm.  From the movement you could tell that if she were of flesh, she would have tingled from his touch, so slight, so smooth, soft, sensuous.

Once his fingers reached the inner curve of her elbow, his touch lingered just a brief moment longer, then softly he drew his hand up, but brought it back no further than an inch from her.  Holding his palm outward, fingers vertically upward, he softly caressed the air over the sculptured clothing that covered her breast, as if every minute particle of atmosphere between his palm and her breast could be felt between them.

The air grew warm in the vast room.

Slowly his fingertips moved to the indentation at the base of her neck and again, as if to feel her pulse, his fingers alighted softly, tenuously, and it was hard to know if the marble quivered.

Although in mannequin pose, I held my breath.

Although I could not see, I could imagine that if she could, the Woman in White pinked in anticipation.  With the palm of his hand, he stroked with loving gesture her face, traced his forefinger along her brow, and caressed the tendril of hair that curved over her shoulder.

When his right hand slowly fell down back to his side, he took one step back, and breathed in deeply.  The set of his shoulders could tell an observer, such as myself, that he was deeply satisfied at the moment.  Then, broad shoulders exhibiting, and my ears hearing, he expressed the heaviest of sighs, and took one more step backward, as if the perfume of her reached out to him, and he had to extract himself from the spell of her.

And he turned to his right, to retreat from the room.  His gold handled white and red cane tapped gently on the marble floor, leading his way, taking him back toward the porticos' entrance, and he slightly adjusted his black sunglasses on his face, as if they had been made slightly askew by a woman's kiss.  He was blind to all, but her.

I watched him retire from the room, while in mannequin pose, draped in Chinese red silk, in a Chinese styled dress of the 1960's.  My fifteen minutes were up, and I reposed myself, quitting myself of the inner quiver, and turned my thoughts toward next Monday.

He came to see the Woman in White
in only the way he could
and while he stroked the Woman in White
the Lady in Red sat as if wood.


©Karilea Rilling Jungel
13 August 2000




Karilea
When you want to be loved, look within...KRJ


[This message has been edited by Sunshine (edited 08-13-2000).]

[This message has been edited by Sunshine (08-16-2002 06:59 AM).]

© Copyright 2000 Karilea Rilling - All Rights Reserved
Mark Bohannan
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1 posted 08-13-2000 08:54 PM       View Profile for Mark Bohannan   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Mark Bohannan

OOhhhh wow girl...I loved this.  The passion in his heart kept building and I could feel every bit of it.  You had me in anticipation myself....and I was wondering how it was going to come about and you got me with it good.  Lovely piece of prose and now I am getting a better understanding of where to go with mine.  
Sven
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2 posted 08-13-2000 09:24 PM       View Profile for Sven   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Sven

Karilea. . .

I'm simply speechless. . . this is absolutely wonderful. . . what would we would all give for the gift here. . .

Superb. . .

-------------------------------------------------------

That which gives light must endure burning
--Victor Frankl

Marge Tindal
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3 posted 08-13-2000 09:40 PM       View Profile for Marge Tindal   Email Marge Tindal   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Marge Tindal's Home Page   View IP for Marge Tindal

Karilea~
I can feel this piece.
It's as though I sat the bench with
the 'Lady In Red' ... and was mesmerized.

Nice story, gal !
Yeah ... our spirits are 'feely-touchy' today !

Thanks for pointing me this way.
~*Marge*~


~*The pen of the poet never runs out of ink, as long as we breathe.*~
noles1@totcon.com


BreyerRose
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4 posted 08-14-2000 01:53 PM       View Profile for BreyerRose   Email BreyerRose   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for BreyerRose

WOW!!!
That had me holding my breath.  All I can seem to say is WOW!!

Hugs and Kisses,
Paula

Sunshine
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5 posted 08-14-2000 06:41 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

Thank you all so much. If I caught, inspired, transfixed, or Wow'd you, then I did what I had hoped to do.
Dusk Treader
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6 posted 08-14-2000 10:32 PM       View Profile for Dusk Treader   Email Dusk Treader   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Dusk Treader

This was great work Karilea! Very descriptive but not too much so, and you held me enraptured, in anticipation as the Lady in Red described the scene. And then the ending was great, just loved that! Awesome, awesome, awesome.. are you an old pro that's been holding out? I'd say submit this to the main site, or Countless Horizons! (Shameless Plug.)

Abrahm Simons

"Keep on dreamin' boy 'cause when you stop dreaming it's time to die" - Blind Melon
Christopher
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7 posted 08-15-2000 01:00 AM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

*GASP*


Karilea - wow... what can I say. The sensuality of this is overwhelming. Take a "simple" object, an unusual occurance and what do you have? In your hands, a masterpiece. This stands up there next to the lady in white Karilea, as a work of art.

wow again.

C.
Sunshine
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8 posted 08-15-2000 12:15 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

Abe if CH [you] think this fits, then by all means, I would be glad to post it there...

please know that your comments are taken to heart...thank you...

Chris, a "gasp" from you says it all.  Thank you.

Karilea
When you want to be loved, look within...KRJ
Sudhir Iyer
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9 posted 08-15-2000 03:19 PM       View Profile for Sudhir Iyer   Email Sudhir Iyer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Sudhir Iyer

AWESOME fits this one perfectly ...

I am tripped by the beauty of this one, Karilea...

If I were to open my mouth today, only one sound would evoke... WOW

regards,
sudhir
Sunshine
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10 posted 08-15-2000 03:38 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

Heaven help me that I never run out of thanks to give you for all of your support, encouragement, and honesty.  Thank you, Sudhir...
StarrGazer
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11 posted 08-15-2000 10:53 PM       View Profile for StarrGazer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for StarrGazer

this was amazing the lady in red pulled me in and wove a beautiful web of a story that I got lost in great work !!!  
Sunshine
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12 posted 08-16-2000 08:39 AM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

StarrGazer, may I ask that you write all of my reviews?  Thank you!
Christopher
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13 posted 05-24-2002 02:15 AM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

i was lying in bed, trying to go to sleep. as usual, i wasn't succeeding. for some reason, out of the blue, this popped into my mind, and wouldn't let go.

so, after recognizing that sleep would be a while coming (a-gain), i thought i'd come in and dust this off. if it stuck in my mind for a year and a half, it had to be something special, right?

reading it again, i think that yes, it is.

[This message has been edited by Christopher (05-24-2002 02:17 AM).]

Sunshine
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14 posted 05-24-2002 06:40 AM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

Perhaps one of the kinder actions witnessed by the heart, when watching someone dust off an object of affection, whether animate or otherwise...Thank you Christopher.  From the bottom of my inkwell.

[This message has been edited by Sunshine (05-24-2002 07:05 AM).]

Enchantress
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15 posted 05-24-2002 09:06 AM       View Profile for Enchantress   Email Enchantress   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Enchantress

PURE MAGIC!!
Thank you Christopher for dusting this one off....
Karilea...this is...you are.... AMAZING!!
Martie
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16 posted 05-24-2002 11:50 AM       View Profile for Martie   Email Martie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Martie's Home Page   View IP for Martie

I really enjoyed this, Karilea....from first word to last sigh...excellent writing!
JamesMichael
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17 posted 05-26-2002 05:22 PM       View Profile for JamesMichael   Email JamesMichael   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JamesMichael

Wonder what the lady in red would do if the gentleman approached her in the same manner he approached the woman in white.  James

[This message has been edited by JamesMichael (05-26-2002 05:25 PM).]

Mysteria
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18 posted 05-26-2002 06:06 PM       View Profile for Mysteria   Email Mysteria   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Mysteria

Well I think that the comments are set in stone like the piece and your writing in general, we NEED to see you in print Karilea, and I can not wait to add you to my shelf when it happes.  This was superb from beginning ot end.

~* Tell someone in your family that you love them today *~

Sunshine
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19 posted 05-26-2002 08:29 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine


Let me thank Christopher, again, for pulling this up from the bottom pages...when I first posted this piece, I know I had worked very hard to give a very sensual feel to it - I wanted you to be in the room and BE the Lady in Red, watching.  You have ALL given me a great deal of encouragement not only in the past, but most recently, as I leap out once more into a dream, with Great Expectations of seeing it through.  I cannot thank you all enough...so until I make the call and tell you The Party Is At My House, all I can do is Thank You!
Gemini
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20 posted 05-30-2002 08:24 PM       View Profile for Gemini   Email Gemini   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Gemini

Powerful piece, stunning imagery.  Very splendid, kind of reminds me of one of my more favorite movies "Scent of A Woman", with Al Pacino.  Excellent!
Sunshine
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21 posted 08-02-2002 10:33 PM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine


Thank you, Gemini.  That is one of my favorite movies, as well...I'm glad you ranked this prose up with that piece.  Thank you!
Zinsser
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22 posted 08-15-2002 09:16 PM       View Profile for Zinsser   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Zinsser

WOW!!!!!   thank you for sharing this piece...
~~ Connie ~~
Sunshine
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23 posted 03-15-2011 01:27 AM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

Today, I sent this piece off to the Texas Poet Laureate...a young woman who wrote a piece about feeling up one of Michelangelo's statues [a gentle man's thigh, expounding on the stone's sculpture] in the Louvre...and she was surprised [several years ago] when the police came out with guns at the ready! She truly thought [in her early 20s] that such art was meant to be touched! [Go figure!]

So, it only was natural that I figured she might like this, right?

  

JamesMichael
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Kapolei, Hawaii, USA


24 posted 04-11-2015 08:41 PM       View Profile for JamesMichael   Email JamesMichael   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JamesMichael

still nice....james
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