Monday, January 24, 2011

Frida: A Letter


I placed 5x7's of Frida Kahlo's artwork in frames, reserved for Mom, cousins, and friends; because Frida feels like family now. I've always known her work, distinguished by a serious face and uni brow, rendering me sullen and smitten all at once. I've trudged through a documentary and a half and clung to her story like callused hands to a relentless utensil.

I now understand her solemn.



Frida,

I know what it's like to hold a man's heart in your hand and still not be able to grasp it. To craft his being with your most prized possession (your talent) and still go unnoticed.
I've taken back a few "Diego's", in my day. Kissed an artist or two who have seen me as more than the apprentice. Although I could mimic the curve of their lips and the sultry of their touch, I never quite inherited the deceit. It is the one thing I refused to master.

Your name sounds like freedom. Are you free now? From a love that kept you like no ball and chain ever could? I know what it means to be an anchor without anything (or anyone) holding you down. I've drowned myself in brown skin and unapologetic tears before. Salt water taffy eyes and a fist full of hair: Do you equate now Frida?

Does his clothing suit you like a song or drape like a memory? Is love hidden in the fetal position of your paintbrush? Is it the real reason for the cripple in your stance?

As much as I don't want to, I'm afraid I will love like you Frida. I will learn to mend and break like forgiveness is JUST another word for glue. I will paint poems on a mental canvass with larynx and air and shimmy my dirty laundry through stanzas. Trousers in my prose, I will tell the world of our samba and avoid the judgemental stares. I want to love on a platform like you Frida, for the world to see.

-riv-

1 comment:

rio de` said...

This is wonderful. Besides the fact that I adore Frida Kahlo and her work, you did a great job intermingling how you related to her.