Welcome to my blog, where I take pleasure in words and pictures, be they my own or those of others. I'm a creative individual, and the crafty side I explore on my 'other blog', Picking Up The Threads, which I hope you'll visit too. I'm sure you understand that I have sole copyright of my original work and any of my contributions, so please ask if you want to use them. A polite request is rarely refused. So, as they used to say on the BBC's 'Listen With Mother' radio programme, many years ago: "Are you sitting comfortably? Then we'll begin."

Tuesday, 14 August 2012


Botticelli had no hand in this scene, 
though the woman’s heavenly body
had once been likened
to that of the Love goddess,
stepping on to earthly shores. 

Her almost divine nakedness
was also half-hidden, 
though not to save the beholder 
from blindness or madness.,
but to disguise her vulnerable beauty.

Her untimely end merited no ethereal cloak
proffered by a goddess of Spring,
instead she wore a paper shroud, 
torn, as her spirit had been, 
ephemeral, as was her life. 

No golden scallop boat 
had borne her ashore, 
fanned by the Zephyrs’ breath. 
Her chosen shell lay cradled like a child
against her breast.

If we press our ears to its nacreous lips 
we may hear her secrets, 
catch the scent of lovers past,
or taste her salt tears,
as we lift it to sound her passing.

© Marilyn Brindley

Image by Francesca Woodman, provided as a creative writing prompt, by Tess at The Mag. The Birth of Venus provided by Sandro Boticelli at the Uffizi Gallery.


  1. "A paper shroud." Yes. And that paper shroud appears so often throughout her work.

  2. Very nice description of her untimely passing ~ I specially like the last stanza ~ Lovely share ~

  3. Your words for this are like milk to a baby, and if I were the mother of such a sad, lost woman as you so eloquently describe, showing her beauty, on the tail of her burdens, you strike the poet in all who read this. Your line, "though the woman's heavenly body- had once been likened to that of a love goddess" sets her stage so magically. A very nice poem, and a sweet tribute just for her.

  4. Hello:
    How beautifully you let our imaginations run free as we compare and contrast these images and the poem. It is beguiling how the contemporary artist and the 'old master'have conveyed their interpretations of female beauty. Vulnerable and yet with a hidden strength.

  5. This is such a fabulous read. You have made the sacred feminine the 'special' being and yes, Goddess, she ought to always have been. It's gentle and rich in sad but lovely imagery, from the ethereal cloak to the salt of her tears.
    I am awed by this write. Truly is beautiful.

  6. So much beauty and poignancy.."to disguise her vulnerable beauty"...She didn't know the power of her gift...the immortal Venus.

  7. " Nacreous", i love that, nacre - eous, but whi is "Marilyn Brindley", ?, she writes well

  8. A beautiful rendition of the story of this Mag - especially the last stanza. Well done you.:)

  9. You put it much better than I did! thanks-

  10. lovely tribute for a young, talented and tormented woman.

  11. This is fantastic, Little Nell! The rhythm you have created feels like waves lapping at a rocky shore. I love the soft sensuality this rhythm gives your poem. The reference to Botticelli at the beginning, sets a classical tone for the piece. This is such a special work. Thank you for sharing this.

  12. 'Torn as her spirit had been'. There are many words that could describe this piece. All I can say is very, very well done. A delight to read, again and again.

  13. not to save the beholder
    from blindness or madness.,
    but to disguise her vulnerable beauty....nice...but your last stanza stole the show....wow...so much wild emotion in pressing your ear to it and her passing...very nice...