Poetry Painting Project: Day 16


We selected 30 poems (from the public domain) and each day for the next 30 days I will write a poem inspired by it, and Addie will paint a painting.

So, without further ado, let’s get to today’s painting and poem, inspired by Robert Frost’s poem, Mending Wall.

To read this poem, click here (or scroll down near the bottom of the page)


Light Shines Through The Wall by Addie Hirschten



The bird was shot through
by a huntress—
her mouth a cavern,
her teeth stalactites,
and from its yawning depths
was heard the long echo
of a thunderclap.

The bird’s neck was twisted,
and the nares of its yellow, brittle beak
were plugged with dried blood.

It glassy eyes stared upward
from its ossuary of wild grass
into the summer sky that was once its home.

A healer knelt before the corpse.
He was twice-born.
He no longer worshiped death,
having died a child
to be born a man.

“I will cry for you,” he whispered,
and the bird’s neck craned,
the beak opened to drink
his life-giving tears.

How can one not love
that which must die
when one shares with all life
the common bond of mortality?

The bird gazed into the healer’s eyes and said:

“Now I am forever always,
as must be the wind through which I soar.”

But in its seeing eyes
was a mote of disbelief,
as if it didn’t quite believe it was now alive,
and that perhaps it was all a dream.

Any yet it flew,
and flew—
into the sky,
blue without a cloud,
it flew.


by Robert Frost

Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,
That sends the frozen-ground-swell under it,
And spills the upper boulders in the sun;
And makes gaps even two can pass abreast.
The work of hunters is another thing:
I have come after them and made repair
Where they have left not one stone on a stone,
But they would have the rabbit out of hiding,
To please the yelping dogs. The gaps I mean,
No one has seen them made or heard them made,
But at spring mending-time we find them there.
I let my neighbor know beyond the hill;
And on a day we meet to walk the line
And set the wall between us once again.
We keep the wall between us as we go.
To each the boulders that have fallen to each.
And some are loaves and some so nearly balls
We have to use a spell to make them balance:
‘Stay where you are until our backs are turned!’
We wear our fingers rough with handling them.
Oh, just another kind of out-door game,
One on a side. It comes to little more:
There where it is we do not need the wall:
He is all pine and I am apple orchard.
My apple trees will never get across
And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him.
He only says, ‘Good fences make good neighbors.’
Spring is the mischief in me, and I wonder
If I could put a notion in his head:
‘Why do they make good neighbors? Isn’t it
Where there are cows? But here there are no cows.
Before I built a wall I’d ask to know
What I was walling in or walling out,
And to whom I was like to give offense.
Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,
That wants it down.’ I could say ‘Elves’ to him,
But it’s not elves exactly, and I’d rather
He said it for himself. I see him there
Bringing a stone grasped firmly by the top
In each hand, like an old-stone savage armed.
He moves in darkness as it seems to me,
Not of woods only and the shade of trees.
He will not go behind his father’s saying,
And he likes having thought of it so well
He says again, ‘Good fences make good neighbors.’

Robert Frost, 1874-1963. Born in San Francisco, California.
Link Biography: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/robert-frost
Link to Poem: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/44266/mending-wall


For the past couple of months I have been working on a huge new secret project with my painter, Addie Hirshten, of Studio Alchemy

We selected 30 poems (from the public domain) and each day for the next 30 days I will write a poem inspired by it, and Addie will paint a painting.

Expect an outpouring of creative energy! This is the sort of big project that artists live for … where we can say what we yearn to say.  Big picture stuff. Heart wrenching stuff. I feel so inspired by the poetry we are working with AND seeing Addie’s process as well. Expect daily surprises with our posts. Expect passion. Expect love. Expect life.

Check Out Addie’s Instagram Account: www.instagram.com/alchemy.of.art.addie.hirschten/

Check out Addie’s art studio — Studio Alchemy:

The soul should always stand ajar. Ready to welcome the ecstatic experience.

Emily Dickinson

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