Giorgio de Chirico 1927 'Gladiators and Lion', Institute of Arts, Detroit, Michigan


You can never be too festive.
Define yourself
by excess.

Weep ‘til your nosebleeds.
Drink ‘til depraved.
Eat until it impairs.

Don’t purge milk and honey.
Loll to perfect rolling tones.
Contradict attachment.

It’s easier than sitting down.
It’s easier than fighting.
Annihilate the ugly.


Written for:


The challenge was to write a poem inspired by Giorgio de Chirico – the man, his art or one of his works in particular. The website is:

Picture, with all rights reserved, from:  flickr – hanneorla

About zongrik

For those of you who do not know the handle "zongrik," that would be Bat-Ami Gordin. Most people call me "Tammy." Bat-Ami means "daughter of my nation" in Hebrew. It's a heavy name to carry around. I answer to either name. I also answer to "mama." Some Basic Things about me: Animal lover, mom, poet/writer, dramatic soprano, photographer, teacher/tutor, CERT/Technician and, oh yeah, aerospace engineer. I consider myself "The Astro-Poet." To learn more about the origins of the word "zongrik" see whats-a-zongrik?

Posted on August 6, 2011, in D’verse Poets Pub, Poetry and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 27 Comments.

  1. ..and excess it was.. i was there exactly a week ago at the colosseum in Rome… weird games to keep the people happy..

    • wow! cool comment. i wasn’t even thinking of that, and duh…that’s what it was all about. i looked at the lion, saw him binging and figured “what the hell, go ahead and binge, human kind binges on all kinds of things, why can’t you?” so then i wrote a sarcastic piece about binging…and it turned on itself, and was it “should” have been about after all.

      funny how it can work that way.

      tnx 4 comment!!

  2. love the charge in your words…i wish more would take up that mantle…history loops back is what the belief was of the artist, have we back to the coliseum days…oh the glutons we are…have we always been? nice write…

  3. It’s a weird painting, and the event it depicts was all about excesses of all kinds. That lion will have to fight the gladiator though, if it wants to live.

  4. Great interpretation of de Chirico’s painting and I’ve enjoyed the comments that bring it all into focus.

  5. The urgency of your words defines the painting to a tee, I make apologies for not visiting sooner, I have your sonnets earmarked for reading but I’ve been offline with moving home and marketing my books! Great to see you taking part with dVerse!

  6. Loved this! Almost chose this piece myself, as it has often caught my eye and in turn my mind. Enjoyed your take much!

  7. I do like what you did with this prompt. So much to think about.

  8. At first glance, the painting isn’t a particuarly jarring one. Then you look longer and harder, and you see what your words and lines are saying. Great poem.

  9. Ur words made the painting alluring to me. Thank u for sharing this.
    Take a look at my blog =)

  10. Greed,is a scary beast isn’t?great poem and art to keep in mind.

  11. That first stanza was awesome. It just pulled me in and made me want to keep going. It’s amazing what people used to do for entertainment, but look how we destroy people publicly today. I suppose times don’t change that much. Well done!

  12. I like the word play… you captured the scene in your own eyes

    great share~

  13. This was a delightful little romp. So much so I took several run throughs, and read it aloud. I love it, and may quote it later with a second glass of wine.

  14. Contradict attachment.

    It’s easier than sitting down.
    It’s easier than fighting.
    Annihilate the ugly.

    Profound warning!

  15. Enjoyed your post…thank you.
    Siggi in Maine

  16. Goes to show that Circuses and Bread isn’t the answer

  17. That was so good I wished it were a bit longer. Great range in your writing. Such a good take on the piece, well-done:)

  18. I love this! Truth be told, I have a twisted sense of humor, and thoroughly enjoyed the first line’s wicked turn in relation to the painting. Wonderful irony throughout the poem. Well done!

    • Thanks. It just goes to show, never try to be ironic, that won’t work. Ironic stories are apparently the best, up there in the high wit section of literature.

  19. makes me miss the good old daze… To the club … Wisconsin Club!
    Nice poetry for the picture ~ will merged – ‘Annihilate the ugly.”
    Gand spectacle!

  20. Love the image you chose and the words you added to it my friend. Especially enjoyed the imagery here:

    “Don’t purge milk and honey.
    Loll to perfect rolling tones.
    Contradict attachment.”

    Beautiful write ~ Rose

  21. You had me at the first line “You can never be too festive” The rest is hinged on that, as I see it. A poem of self annhilation and advice to the reader to do the same. A masque of over indulgence. Imagry is great. Nice work!

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