Nude descending a staircase

Nude Descending a Staircase, No.2, 1912 - Marcel Duchamp

The nude descends a staircase,

the spectator looks on,

a motion so common

that thought has forgotten

these simple movements,

a cinematic masterpiece

in a single frame,

a human shape whose

curves have disappeared

beneath the artist’s brush,

multiplied into a living force,

a beautiful robotic cadence

reaching the foot of its brief descent.

11 thoughts on “Nude descending a staircase

  1. Nice piece of ekphrasis, John. I have never seen this painting prior to now. You have captured it wonderfully. “A motion so common / that thought has forgotten” – to me, those things are the hinge of the poem, stunning. D

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Jon,
    Glad to have found you here! I have also started….trying to figure it all out also.
    Love this poem as it pertains to one of my favorite subjects, painting. Working on one now.


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