Salvator Rosa’s Philosophy
by Aaron Robertson
Ah, Signor, what a curious facade
your palette paints, in sombre tones exhumed
from deep within Vesuvius’ shade.
Your chiaroscuro brow, although esteemed
by melancholy eyes, sits ill at ease
with dictums as austere as you have framed.
Such words should be a maxim for our days,
not hidden behind glass while others tell
us everything, yet nothing that is wise.
Forget the flattery of marble halls
that keep you safe for their proper delight,
but fear to put your charms on open trial.
To fill the void, I’d promise you the street
in which to give your principles full reign;
your cherished silence made a perfect state.