There's something of the early dawn,
creation at the point of quickening,
when watching how form rises from amorphous clay,
the way the potter's fingers edge it into life.
If you could gather all the sand grains
from all the many beaches of this world
and match them 1:1 with all the stars,
the sand would run out long before they did.
Those fingers on the Sistine Chapel's ceiling now,
they might have been content
to render genesis
had God been minimalist
And should the potter then strive for the pristine form?
His prototype from God? Would that be it?
Undecorated and unglazed
or seen from far away,
its prelapsarian form conveys
perfection as it might have been.
But glazed, close up, the scene has changed,
and while the colours still would please
the most exacting God - and, being porcelain,
are proof against decay - they and its shape
are merely background now
to vistas of pornography,
of child abuse,
brutality and pain.
Perfection underlies and underlines
the artless marks unveiling blot and smudge.
A true and urgent metaphor for man.
Earlier this week Grayson Perry was made a member of The Royal Academy
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