transfiguration

she spins
a new cocoon…
wings folded, form fading,
reflecting back as ghost shadows
–enter–
the dark circle of the forest
moves ever closer as
time compresses
–itself–
quiescent…what
is done is done…what will
emerge as the continuum
–expands–
unbounded, uncharted, starborne
she waits…her elements
recombined as
essence

I used the (repeated) butterfly cinquain form because Diana Peach’s #photoprompt illustration, above, for Colleen’s #TankaTuesday, made me think immediately of a butterfly/cocoon.

For the artwork I did a painting inspired by the illustration and then fooled around with it in Photoshop to try to convey a feeling of metamorphosis.

who are you

bat

who
are you
and who are

you
not—is
there a point

where
each merges
into the other

where
you meet
the both/and

neither–
where it
doesn’t really matter?

The Kick-About #15 features lithography illustrations by Eric Ravilious from the book High Street. I was immediately drawn to the shop full of masks, above. I’ve drawn, painted, stitched and collaged many masks over the years, and I also have quite a few that I’ve collected, stored and waiting for a place to be displayed.

horse

For the prompt, I decided to focus on Mexican animal masks, since the animal masks in the shop illustration seemed to be the most prominent element.

dog

Masking has a long history in the indigenous culture of the Americas, and animals are commonly used in dances, ritual, and ceremonies, often combined with Christian stories and characters.

fox

Masks are vessels in which a powerful energy is stored, an energy than can help cross the boundaries between human and animal, creating a co-existence of spirits in the same body.

bull/lizard

I confess that once I got started with these it was hard to stop.

hummingbird

The technique I used was the Rorschach monoprint–I painted one side and folded the paper in the center and pressed down to create a mirror image.

jaguar
owl

and if they take me
to heart, if they pull me through
their own openings

will I flow, float dreaming in
side their abiding presence–

no, not dead, but yet
not of the living—unbound
by movement or time,

reconnected, emerged as
an ancestor to myself

pig
horned creature

what came out
was not the same as
what went in

eagle
goat

I liked the bat so much I did it twice, once on red paper and once on white.

bat 2

animals
do not need our gods
to exist

Optics

does what I construct
from what I see
fit the idea
of me?

can I be mirrored
repeated copied
multiplied

contained in reflection–
momentary glimpses–
light entering
eye?

translating possibility
into something visible,
manifest–

always an after
to an image as
elusive as
before

For both of this week’s dVerse prompts, from Mish (eye) and De (quadrille of possibilty).

There was a time when I did many many eye collages, and the illustrations here are from about seven years (and many lifetimes) ago. These are both good prompts, and I still have some ideas…

If the circle opens, will it become a line? (new moon/almost like praying)

I wanted to reblog my response to an old prompt of Sue Vincent’s in honor of the New Moon this weekend. The Oracle had something to say about it too.

In my original post, I explained my inspiration: I discovered this week that the plural for luna mare (moon sea) is lunar maria …is that wonderful, or what?  So when I saw Sue Vincent’s Luna photo prompt, above, I had to incorporate it into my response.

Here’s the poem I wrote for Sue’s photo:

The arc of
lunar mountains, edged
dark with bays
of basalt…
Maria!—your names reflect
as mirrors to fill

with sorrow,
forgetfulness, snakes,
storms and fear.
Can we find
the sea of tranquility
and sail into dreams?

between is and if only
we listen
as earth grows restless

breathing wild ancient song
beneath murmuring leaves

climbing windshine
over rock rooted paths

wandering through the hidden secrets
of the moon’s dark night

And of course this song is still and always appropriate.

You can see 14 other interpretations of “Maria” here.

Also linking to Earthweal Open Link Weekend.

swing stroll slide

be
bop shout–
rhythm–blues–
eight to the bar–
oompah oompah groove–
boogie-woogie back beat
jingle jangle jive talkin
double time front line howl growl whine–
interlude solitude riff raff boom–
whistle whomp wah wah zoomba zoomba zoom

The Kick-About’s challenge #14 was a short film by Norman Maclaren called “Boogie Doodle”. It really reminded me of Matisse’s Jazz collages, and I used his abstracted figures as inspiration to create my own dancers based on photos of jazz dancers I found on the internet. I also wanted to recreate the shadow effect for both the dancers and the dots. Primary colors seemed a natural fit for both dots and ground, and I cut out the figures in black and white as contrast, inspired by the film.

For the poem I wanted to use music and musical sound words. It was much harder than I anticipated, but I like the idea of a poem composed mostly of sounds, and may visit it again. I found a great onomatopoeia dictionary online too.

Linking to dVerse OLN hosted by Linda.

Veterans Day NYC 2020

salutes spaced
between vehicles–
ghostboots march
silently
in formation—echos caught
in mind’s eye–the tears

As with seemingly every celebration in 2020, the Veteran’s Day parade today here in NYC was largely symbolic–“a caravan of 100 vehicles with no spectators”–a shadow of the usual ceremony of 20-30,000 participants.

For Colleen’s #Tanka Tuesday where the words are imagine and gratitude, and Peter Frankis’ prompt at dVerse, where the task is to write about something from the local news (https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/new-york/articles/2020-11-11/car-caravan-replaces-parade-at-nyc-veterans-day-observance)

Refugee

Lost among the layers of words, my needs slip through the cracks that keep opening into assaults on the ways that have always belonged to me.  I don’t want to be reoriented towards a future I can’t imagine, or pushed through a portal into a world I don’t understand.  A world that does not recognize me and has no relationship to the one that has always sheltered me from unwelcome change.

All those strident sentences you spit out—they mock my choices, erasing any value in what I call a good life.  The scale on which you judge me makes my wishes weigh nothing.  You discard everything that makes me happy.

The tasks of survival are not so easily sorted into black and white, good and evil.  What seems to work for the time being is all we can attain sometimes, worth more than the promises of a future that we can’t see.

It’s impossible to know God’s plans or to understand them—despite your fancy degrees and charts, there are realms beyond the facts, beyond what you call science, that we can’t anticipate or control.

Instead you put yourself above me.  But you appear in my mirror as one-dimensional, rejecting me and the grieving that belongs to me, the losses I have experienced and feel.  You insist they are worthless, I am worthless.  But what do you offer to me that will replace them?

You list all my beliefs and shame them, shame me, shame my culture, my family, my friends.  And you call it compassion.

I am not asking for your false understanding.  I do not want what you want, what you think I need.

I want to be worth something.  I want to matter to someone, something.  I want a world that holds out a hand and tells me I belong.  Where has it gone?

look at me
listen to my life
make me real

Jim Feeney at Earthweal gave us quite a challenge this week: to write a poem from the point of view of someone who is a climate change denier or a climate solution denier or someone who just doesn’t care because they won’t be around when it happens. It’s not easy to put yourself sympathetically in someone else’s shoes. I chose to repeat some of the words and ideas I heard in interviews with Trump supporters, figuring no environmentalist would ever vote for Trump. I have to admit I resent the fact that the media always tells us we need to try to “understand” people who support Trump, and yet Trump supporters never have to return the favor and try to understand those of us who don’t. We are not all wealthy Ivy League educated “elites”.

And the thing is…in the end our desires are not so different. I don’t reject science and I would not talk of God, but I have spiritual beliefs too that involve feelings and ideas that can’t really be quantified. I also often feel unacknowledged, dismissed, invisible. I have lost parts of my life that will never return and cannot be replaced. We all want to matter, to belong somewhere.

Why can’t we make that somewhere a place of mutual respect that honors our interdependence with the natural world? So we have a world where everyone’s children and grandchildren have a fighting chance at survival?