A Girl with a Watering Can, Robert A Sieczkiewicz
Frail gentleman with cane in hand just passed
The folly le Temple de L’amour, paused.
Lack of memory has fear in him caused.
Le Petit Trianon will off’r contrast.
Like he, former tenant felt as outcast.
Feels his condition cannot be uncaused,
As if lowly bug, brain is diapaused.
A little girl with watering can asked.
This happy place what brings you to be sad?
Cup your hands, water I may to you give,
That your face can be changed to one of glad.
Look ’round see the beauty amongst you live.
True you may never be a Galahad,
Yet burning heart is yours with love to give.
Being a fan of Renoir is one reason I chose this painting to write an art/ poem. But there may be others. I think of my granddaughters often and this picture brings them to the forefront. Maybe the little girl in the painting who has been with me long before I had granddaughters could be a symbol of the daughter I never had. Not sure why, so on to the poem. The little girl I transported from Monet’s famous garden at Argenteuil where Renoir was visiting to Versailles. Versailles offered symbolism that I needed. The young lady in the painting is Mademoiselle Leclere.
I immediately challenge the reader in the second line with folly and temple of love. Will not spoon feed you if the light does not go off Google is always helpful. Some time ago Le Petit Trianon was the private residence of Marie Antoinette. Again there is a challenge to the thinking reader. But you need to know something about Marie Antoinette. She did not like the pressures of Court and spent most of her time at her private residence. Eventually she did give it up, along with her head. Not that is quite a contrast between the man who has lost some of this memory and Marie who lost it all with one clean cut. But the old man also feels useless like a bug because his mind isn’t like it used to be.
Then he comes across a little girl with a watering can. Having been to Versailles, she will never be able to water all the plants with that watering can. So when you think about the poem it is a point to remember. So she gives him some water to wash his face and gives him the facts of life.
Now the test:
Was the little girl real, or an illusion and did the old man wake up and get out of the self-pity mode?
Was the little girl an angel and the water was a symbol of rebirth, is he being baptized?
The little girl was real and smart like my granddaughters and knew that if the man cooled his head he could think better?