Write Around PAM: Roman Saucepan

Saucepan, unknown Roman artist, 4 7/8 x 13 ¾ x 7 3/8 inches, bronze. A time worn pot with a rough, mottled, gray-green and bronze surface with a long, flat handle. The body of the flat-bottomed saucepan bows out slightly from its base and has a shallow lip that curves outward from the pot’s body. It has rough, crusty, gray-green corrosion on its surface with bits of smooth brownish bronze underneath showing through. A set of three very thin parallel grooves are incised around the pan’s top, just below the lip and more on the lip itself. More thin lines are seen on the interior of the saucepan. A flat handle protrudes from the left side of the pot. It narrows in the middle then widens into a rounded end with a circular cutout of its middle. More incised grooves form two circles around the cutout.

As county risk levels shift and vaccinations increase, we may start to venture out of our households more often. We likely have spent more time isolated this last year—and more time with the everyday objects around us–than we ever could have anticipated when the shutdown began. Writing allows us the opportunity to pause and reflect on these objects and to explore their unique stories. 

We invite you to first spend some time with this Ancient Roman saucepan and see what inspiration it provides. Imagine the life this piece had. Who used it? And what did they use it for? 

Then, choose an object. It can be the saucepan pictured above, or an object in your home. It could be something that is very special to you, or something that is more ordinary, maybe even something you often overlook. What do you wonder about the life of this object?

Now, we invite you to write from the perspective of that object. Here are two prompts to help you get started. You can choose one, both, or follow your own adventure. Set a timer for 6 minutes and just keep the pen moving.

My favorite time of day… / I come from…

Writing in community is powerful. We are grateful to our longtime partner Write Around Portland for the writing prompts and inspiration. You can revisit past Sunday posts and look for continuing weekly posts through the spring. Please share your work with us! @writearoundpdx @portlandartmuseum #RespectWritingCommunity #WriteAroundPAM

unknown Roman artist, Saucepan, before 1926, bronze, The Sally Lewis Collection, public domain, 26.92

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