From The Parables of Mary Magdalene

It is like a child asleep outside in her basket, shaded from late afternoon sun, veiled against evening flies, under her parents’ loving watch.

Night is coming down, silently, like a worm on its strand of silk. The wind picks up.

Let me feed her before we go inside, the mother says. She says, This feels like the last evening of summer.

The wind is turning, faster now, like iron boring the hole in a millstone.

The father goes inside to fasten the shutters. The mother and the child at her breast are lifted skyward and set down unharmed, naked, in the temple courtyard.

The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Access one piece of artwork every month for free! To experience the full archive, log in or subscribe.

Related Poetry

it is dusk: we see water, deep maroon with black shadows crested on the underside of shelled waves,. a boat lit up with gold lights and steaming smoke into the mauve-dusky sky casts bands of gold and glittering lights on the path of the water, leaves a dark shadow behind it. the shore is a black band of shadows.



Jeff Gundy

blurry image of a dark bedroom lit up by one lamp near a bookshelves on the wall

Second Attempt at Elegy for Anthony Piccione


Shane Seely



Richard Jones



Jean Hollander

Pin It on Pinterest