Peter Watkins



The pursuit of the absolute

It emerges then disappears again;
it come and goes;
it’s there and then elusively it slips away again.
Fuck it. FUCK IT!
It is impossible you say,
head in hands.
It cannot be done.
Nothing is ever finished,
you’d need a hundred lifetimes. 

You work at the figures
putting on then taking away,
the plaster or the clay.
The figures get thinner,
paired down as if there
is something at their core
you seek; and perhaps it is
that nothingness
that haunts us all,
that we deny,
that we festoon with trappings
that make us feel that we are something,
to sustain the lie.

And In the gallery they stand
in their nakedness,
alone or in groups:
the walking man,
the pointing man,
the standing woman,
the falling man,
stripped back to their nothingness,
but nonetheless
undeniably something,
something magnificently human.


Peter Watkins is a Suffolk poet. He is interested in the consolations of poetry: how poetry can help us press back against the pressures & adversities of life.  A collection of poems ‘Enough to Love a Multitude’ is published early in 2018.


Note: Homage to Alberto Giacometti

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