Tuesday, December 05, 2006


In typical Michelle style, once I grab hold of something, I cannot let go of it. Here is the poem, "The Dance" followed by a picture of the painting "Kermesse" on which the poem was based. I remember when my son was in pre-K at the French School in Greenbrae and the spring fair was called "The Kermesse." We had a great time with that and I donated that now infamous burgundy velvet dress (I hope to tell you, that was something - a medieval style dress with leg-o-mutton sleeves with their own capelets, lined in gold satin, white lace insets, trimmed in real ermine and amethysts- Diane Gilman of Champagne Taste on Upper Grant in North beach made it for me based on a costume from an opera - Diane used to design clothes for Janis Joplin and of late, is selling stuff on Home Shopping - how weird is that). Anyway, back to the Kermesse:

The Dance

William Carlos Williams

In Brueghel's great picture, The Kermess,
the dancers go round, they go round and
around, the squeal and the blare and the
tweedle of bagpipes, a bugle and fiddles
tipping their bellies (round as the thick-
sided glasses whose wash they impound)
their hips and their bellies off balance
to turn them. Kicking and rolling
about the Fair Grounds, swinging their butts, those
shanks must be sound to bear up under such
rollicking measures, prance as they dance
in Brueghel's great picture, The Kermess.

Pieter Brueghel, Kermesse


Oil on canvas, approximately 45 inches x 64.5 inches. Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna.

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