Poem up at the Ekphrastic Review

where does the body lie?

a prisoner of gravity,
it remains forever outside of dreams

unfit for the spiritship,
a vessel of startled complexity–
open, unbounded, secret, extreme

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I wrote the original version (much revised) of the above 42 poem at the same time I wrote my haibun, Unattached, which is published on The Ekphrastic Review today, along with Jane’s lyrical poem, Bronze Dreams, and other varied responses to Frida Kahlo’s painting, The Dream.

My collage is once again based on a tarot card, this the the Four of Swords. Kahlo’s paining reminded me very much of the iconic Rider-Waite card, but my own interpretation drifts in between the card and the painting. I could not find out if Kahlo ever studied tarot, but she was friends with many of the Surrealists, who certainly played with its symbolism. The Four of Swords is a card of restoration and healing, just like Frida’s Dream.

I placed a photo of the interior of an Egyptian sarcophagus in the sky. The figure painted there is the sky goddess Nut, who “spreads out her arms protectively to receive the deceased. (s)He is sheltered by her, is adsorbed into her body, and emerges reborn” (Rose-Marie and Rainer Hagen, “Egypt”).

You can read my poem (and Jane’s) here. My thanks once again to editor Lorette C. Luzajic for supporting my work and the interaction between the visual and written arts.

what shines through water

Perhaps the rain and windstorm of Christmas Eve is a beginning towards washing away the darkness of 2020. Of course, as the Oracle reminds us, it’s never that simple.

I was pleased to have 3 pieces selected for The Ephrastic Review’s Christmas day post: Weathering, Our Lady of Toil and Trouble, and Mari Lwyd . You can read them here

away from the rain
shadows still ache with light
storms rip together apart

yet sea and sky sing roses
in the mothertongue
of the moon

ask what you want
for the dreams
you need

Also linking to earthweal Open Link Weekend.

Poem up at The Ekphrastic Review

My poem, “The Healing of Emptiness” is posted on The Ekphrastic Review today, immediately following Jane Dougherty’s luminous “Horse Dreams”, acting almost like a coda to the ruminations of her protagonist’s mind. The inspirational art is Franz Marc’s Tower of Blue Horses. You can read all the selections here.

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My thanks once again to editor Lorette C. Luzajic for supporting my work and the interaction between the visual and written arts.

Poem up at the Ekphrastic Review

My poem, Our Lady of Scarlet, based on a painting of Marchesa di Casati, by Augustus John, is posted today on The Ekphrastic Review, along with Jane Dougherty and other writers.  I did not look up the Marchesa until after I had written my poem, but I think the artist captured the essence of her life in his portrait. What I saw without knowing the facts seems very close to the truth.

You can read my poem here.

My thanks once again to editor Lorette C. Luzajic for supporting my work and the interaction between the visual and written arts.

 

I was told by several people I could post the old way by going to WP Admin–and it works.  I will still be absent for awhile as I am entering the final stages of moving–I’m packing up my computer today.  But I’ll be back before the end of September.

The Rectangular Table (Poem up at The Ekphrastic Review)

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My poem, “The Rectangular Table” has been posted at The Ekphrastic Review today. The painting that inspired it, The Last Supper by Sister Plautilla Nelli, is below.

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I have a little sketchbook that I take along to museums where I draw the faces and sometimes the hands of the Marys I see in paintings, but especially in sculpture.  Since the museums closed, I’ve been drawing from photos of art I find online.

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Why do these images resonate with me?  Unlike representations of Jesus, they seem to reflect an actual human the artist knows and loves…a sister, wife, mother, daughter.  All those denied a place at the rectangular table.

My thanks once again to editor Lorette C. Luzajic for supporting my work and the interaction between the visual and written arts.

You can read my poem, along with other responses to the painting, here.

Obituaries (revised)

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the language of gone–
a call without a response,
so loud it can’t be

heard—a silence entombed in
itself—on the other side

My poem “Obituaries”, is one of the responses to Joaquin Torres Garcia’s painting, “Pintura” (below), posted on The Ekphrastic Review today.  The three poems on this post were composed from parts of it.

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Frank at dVerse challenged us to write some 5-line Japanese form poems.  I must confess that I like the 5-7-5-7-7 form of the tanka, now considered by purists to be false.  Whatever you call it, I still think it works well as a way to focus thought and express feelings.

the language of absence
language of gone
the before of never
silence entombed
the language of death

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The new definitions for writing tanka and haiku confuse me, and I have no idea how to write something that will satisfy the powers that be, although I keep writing 3 and 5-line poems.  And although I recognize a well-written gogyohka, and understand the single line-single breath idea, I have difficulty naming anything I’ve written with that label as well.

language
forbidden
remains
a response
of absence

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But and so…in my continued pruning mode, I’ve taken the posted poem (which was itself severely pruned several times) and turned it into three 5-line poems.  Hopefully they fit the dVerse prompt in some manner.

My thanks to editor Lorette C. Luzajic for once again featuring my work.  You can see my poem “Obituaries”–the original from which these 5-line poems were taken–and read all the other responses as well, here.

larger than life you say

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like
a rock
crushing your soul

from
a place
beyond the sky

and
what no
one will tell

spoken,
distilled into
a symbolic language

but
what of
after?  what of

the
cosmos surrounded
by the abyss—

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My poem, “The Same Old Song”, is among the writing posted today at The Ekphrastic Review in response to Mariano Fortuny’s painting “Fantasy on Faust”, above.

larger than life close up s

The NaPoWriMo prompt was to write a hay(na)ku, which consists of a three-line stanza, where the first line has one word, the second line has two words, and the third line has three words.  I decided to take my poem and condense each stanza creating a new distilled version.  The formatting did not translate to the posting on the Ekphrastic Review website, but I think you can see where the stanza breaks should be.  Read the original poem here.

This was an excellent exercise for someone like me who tends to wordiness, and I will definitely try it again.

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