Resurrection / Binu Karunakaran


They called me

         Cecco, short

for Francesco;

    Notname for want

of real name:

     apprentice, errand

boy rent model cupid

    with dark

        eagle wings

and wicked

    grin in Amor Vincit

Omnia; serene

      face with flaxen

curls floating above

     the apostle


           by light

in the Conversion

   of Saint

Paul; nude epicene

      boy next

to a ram, the symbol

       of lust & Elohim

in St John

   the Baptist; child

about to be slain

     and the seraphim

  who stalls

Abraham’s hand

    in the Sacrifice

of Isaac

          with word

     from the Lord:

“Lay not thine hand upon the lad”


Cohort of pimps

      and cardsharps,

savage, master of

      impasto layering

pigments of the mind

    over a mestica

of blood; in the end

they’ll carve

    your face


   a gash of shame —

the kind your blade

    once branded

a courtesan

 who had the cheek

                    to say



Now, a protean copyist

  in angelic raiment

carries your heavy brush:

        a crux flamant

searing the canvas

     with leaping

tongues of light

       and darkness.


across the stations

of the artists’ cross

He straddles the

       sealant stone

over a tomb


to the earth’s rumble

              and plots

own Resurrection

at every stroke.

Binu Karunakaran is a poet, translator, and journalist based in Kochi, Kerala

* Cecco del Caravaggio, later identified as Francesco Buoneri, is considered the most talented among the caravaggisti, or followers of Caravaggio’s style

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