I wrote the following poem in my ninth grade History Through Art class to accompany Melancholia, 1514, by Albrecht Dürer.
Face shrouded in shadow,
Upon what do you meditate?
Leaning your laureled head
Upon an enclosed fist,
As you look inward.
Your feathered wings closed in reserve,
Your heavenly garments rumpled,
As you sit on a doorstep.
What do you measure in your lap?
What do your keys unlock?
An hourglass counts the meaningless time.
The scale hangs ready to weigh worthless existence.
The magic square is already solved.
A baby doll,
With wings like your own,
And a sleeping dog,
Are your only companions,
Save your dark thoughts.
Perhaps your reflection lies
In what you have lost
Sitting in the shadow:
The brilliant comet passing you by,
The joyful rainbow around the corner,
The seaside town enjoying the view.
Scattered tools surround your feet,
Awaiting your inspiration,
To craft an irregular block of stone
Into the work of genius.
A perfect sphere,
An unrung bell,
A ladder leading upward,
Does anything matter to you?
In your melancholia.