Poem – Harlequin with Australian Rules Football

Harlequin with Australian Rules Football
‘Art is a lie through which we see the truth’ – Picasso


In the middle of 1906,
a young Andalusian painter
shipped himself to Melbourne,
attended a training session
of the Fitzroy Football Club
and painted a picture
of what he saw,
a now-lost early work
of a slender, angular man
in multi-coloured gear
clutching a balloon
of inflated leather.
Other figures
in similar garb
danced behind him
on a green field.
Leather balloons
flew everywhere.


Kevin Densley


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Kevin Densley is a poet and writer-in-general. His work has been published in Australia, the UK and the USA. His fourth book-length poetry collection, Sacredly Profane, will be published by Ginninderra Press later in 2020. He is also the co-author of a multi Green Room Award nominated play, Last Chance Gas, which was published by Currency Press.


  1. Colin Ritchie says

    Your words have painted a fab picture for me. Great stuff!

  2. Kevin Densley says

    Many thanks, Colin. This is my fantasy of Picasso in Melbourne, attending Fitzroy VFL training, though he certainly painted Harlequin images around this period.

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