Beauty Is Never Whole: A Poem by Queen George
We are more than a single work
But twenty-six in any moment
Lined up side by side –
An entire exhibit
About the exhibit they say
“It is inconsistent,”
“I cannot comprehend why these line
run here and not there, or why
they run at all”
“It needs more yellow/red/darkness/trees – I wouldn’t
hang this on my wall.”
I know the sorts of things
People say at museums
When they aren’t paying attention
And finding a way to
Understand the gaps between
The consistency of chaos
And things that do not
Seem to fit.
I could tell you a lot of things about myself, concrete things that you could hold in your hand. But that would mean very little in terms of who I actually am. So I’ll tell you this instead:
When I was twelve years old my greatest ambition was to marry a painter. Not to be one myself, but to marry one. Because I felt so fractured, existing in too many dimensions at once, I thought that a painter could solidify me, could show me a literal vision of who I was in graphite and oil.
Instead, I read Schrodinger and Einstein, learned to love the folds of time and space, to understand myself bending back upon myself, always becoming. Now I only paint myself, blindfolded and upside-down. And the work is never finished. Still, I like to know the glimpses others get, when the light hits just so – like to know what I looked like in that one moment of existence.
Because in seconds the moment will be gone
And the picture will not matter.
I will bound off again
Never pausing long enough to hear the words
“It needs a little more red here”
“She is too light. Too dark.”
“Why are these lines curved when they should be straight?”
I never wanted to be hung on your wall,