Christina’s World

by revbillcook


"Christina's World" by Andrew Wyeth

Image by goldberg via Flickr


I wonder,

What is your world like Christina?

I return again and again

To this one painting.

In your pink dress, the color of a dried lobster,

Thin arms straining, back arched awkwardly

Unnaturally twisted, left shoulder pushed forward,

You pull your resistant body

Through a sea of yellow-brown grass.

From his studio Andrew watched you pull yourself from a cemetery

Through this field of dry grass toward a distant farm house.

Haunted by your determination,

By the slow measured movement of your body,

He drew your arms, your hands, your fingers, over and over,

Straining to capture this one moment, this gesture, with exactness.

Finally in tempera he painted this:  Christina’s World.

Is this your world, Christina?

What do you see?

Your face is turned away from us.

Do you see an arid field, lifeless, airless?

A field of unyielding loneliness?

Or a field of soft golden grass,

A familiar deep in-breathing

Of solitude, of home, of undisturbed peace?

Or is it both?


Information about Christina’s World, including Andrew Wyeth’s description of the color of her dress as the color of a dried lobster shell is from The Art of Andrew Wyeth, by Wanda M. Corn, published by the New York Graphic Society, Boston, 1973.