For the response to a nature painting, I chose zangarmarsh by Daxe Shaeffer, which seems like an unusual choice, as a field of blue glowing mushrooms isn’t exactly something you would see in nature, but I felt like it fit the prompt, as while it is an unrealistic fantasy style of nature, it is still nature. As such, I wanted my poem to paint a picture of the comfort and serenity of nature, and an escape from modern life, but with a somewhat otherworldly feel, which is the feeling that the painting gives me. To achieve this, I used imagery and a lot of words describing the unusual nature of the picture, as well as neologism (“sporelings”), which is quite literally using words that don’t quite exist in our world. It was somewhat difficult to achieve this imagery, as I had to carefully choose words that evoked a dream-like, serene feel, and I had to search a bit for a few of the words, but I think it worked pretty well in the end. The poem is written in free verse, there’s no real structure, and the entire poem is one continuous stanza. I chose to do this as I was trying to paint an idyllic picture of a landscape rather than describe a cohesive narrative, so I wanted it to be somewhat free of rigid structure. I used alliteration (“gleam and glimmer, bloom and blossom”) and repetition (“free from burden / free from change”) throughout my poem, as I felt as though these techniques made the poem sound more serene: the sounds that are alliterated are usually ‘soft’ sounds like f, l, b, or s, which sound more soft and rounded than other consonants, which fits the serene aura of the painting. I also often refer to soft lights, like glowing things and moonlight, but say that the sun never shines, and often positively reference shade, which is deliberate subversion of norms, as in my experience, bright light usually has a positive symbolic meaning in literature. However, I was thinking of the sun and bright light as symbolising the exhaustion and commotion of modern capitalist life. By saying the sun never shines, I am painting a picture of a world free from exhaustive labour, one where you can forever “slumber…under dreamy shade” and live outside our world and its culture of constant work, allowing your “glowing heart [to] heal”. The use of end-stopping also assists in this feeling, I end many lines with full stops, as this feels suitable when the poem is about resting: I give the reader lots of places to rest. Throughout the poem, I referenced the painting a lot by mentioning mushrooms and luminescence, and luminescent mushrooms are the primary focus of the painting. I also extended the visual by referencing animals not present in the picture, such as fireflies, salamanders and squid, but these are all thematically appropriate, as all the animals exhibit some kind of luminescence.