The Maier Museum of Art
at Randolph College

“The Eyes of Cows” by Luigi Coppola

after Cow #1 by Arthur Dove

Arthur Dove, Cow #1, 1935,

I’m looking through the shop window
at the filled rows, glass boxes and walls.
Did I mention the smell? Was there one?
Yes, it was musk, warmth, dust, alcohol
infusing this high street zoo of frozen frames.
Trim and pimped on quiet pedestals:
from open field, wood, stream to shelved
herd, flock, shoal of distant cousins.

I’m staring at the cow head, its pert ears
pointless satellites, its nose a dried oyster
glued back on slightly off angle,
and its eyes, in their wide blackness
reflecting each blade, fence, muddied machine,
and that final hollowing out by prod, then pistol.


First Published in Anon Issue 8, 2011

Luigi Coppola ( teaches and writes in London, England. Shortlisted for the Bridport Prize twice, he appeared in the Worple Press anthology ‘The Tree Lineand publications include Acumen, The Frogmore Papers, The High Window, Ink, Sweat and Tears, Iota, Magma, Orbis, Neon, Rattle, The Rialto, THE SHOp and Snakeskin.