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“Soaring like smoke” by Joe Shaw

August 11, 2014

Soaring like Smoke.

Southern Albatross majestic solemn winged

wanderer we are in awe, of the beauty-simplicity

one struggles to imagine the

Albatross place therein vast- demystifying great


soaring gliding a horizontal path, over the deep-

blue sea sweeping

into the wind height gained swooping downwards

using wind currents minimal energy lost, spiritual

omen great Southern Albatross navigating

the circumference of the Earth at will, born to

fly –travel on wingspans three-point-five metres

aloft over waves

O wandering Albatross,

Cycle in and out using ices Antarctic sea-breezes

they’re the masters

gliding with ease, to observe-explain I’ll paint a

picture of Epic Emotion down in the Southern

Ocean using my artistic imagination, Albatross

near-far, size-species another seabirds following


course fish of the day, support canvas-linen a

horizon composition,

Aptly descriptive from experience, knife-fillet,

brush-palette O ghostly silhouette of

Seabirds casting ambient light, Southern Albatross

illustrated in-full flight, converging into the foreground like smoke

6B pencil will sketch convey, next layer? Oil,

Acrylic, Water, Pastel, I’ll choose the one with less


I’ll use a technique called Chiaroscuro, Italian

translated (Chiaro)light (oscuro)dark,to create a

smoky quality,

I’ll need music to set the mood-chant Gregorian

Choir of the Monks

The Abbey of Santo Domingo de silos, ghostly-

gothic like the Southern Antarctic,albatross

My colours basic blues, blue will cool any colour

violet-green mix-match, black-white for that great

Southern Albatross flying

higher, higher traversing the stormy waters into

the distant sea mist

Clouds dark, far in the background to the left of

the horizon beams of

bright sunlight yellow ochre piercing through,

striking the waves tipped with titanium white caps,

a harmony of blue , home of that Southern

Albatross on a

Pastel, painted, Planet rising to the Zenith!

With little struggle frame my finished work of art

an illusion in my

Soul and heart, a treatment of contour and form

Italian Sfumato (smoke)

Albatross soaring wild and free on the endless

deep-blue sea;

Southern Ocean, Chatham Rise, Auckland-

Campbell islands Antarctic

Winds roaring fifties from the frozen hell,

Godforsaken place

Goodbye farewell,

Albatross O majestic seabird you belong there,

nature’s great ocean

Wanderer beware the Ancient-Mariner and fishing


An empty sea means death for thee,

no Albatross soaring like smoke will be a

Great loss,

Down in the Southern Ocean Painted-Pastel-

In motion.



Poem by Joseph Shaw (Christchurch)


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