transposed by all that has taken both place and time

the reflection absorbs me–
torn pieces of rainbows,
all those things left undone
turning the inside out–

windows with no edges,
mirrors of light waves,
disintegration–
the reflection absorbs me–

don’t fence me in you say–
your words pile up in layers
that turn into
pieces of rainbows—

I am suspended between,
my replies tangled up
with the silence of the dead–
all those things left undone

all those unsent messages–
castaways held captive
on ships without a shore—
turning us inside out

Jade, at dVerse, has us considering edges.

Art from the archives with a cascade poem.

Sisters

We remain ourselves, enigmatic–
a paired paradox
of who we are–sisters
bound by blood and expectation.

Our portrait is a puzzle
to which we hold the pieces–
together we can complete it—but only
if we remain ourselves, enigmatic.

We are both similar and neither
without being either
identical or opposite–
a paired paradox.

We hold the mirror up lightly,
confronted by our artificial reflections,
the complex and divergent shades
of who we are—sisters.

But to you we reveal nothing–
only these parallel arrangements–
the outlines of our surface disguises,
bound by blood and expectation.

I wrote this cascade for The Ekphrastic Review challenge, Theodore Chasseriau’s painting The Two Sisters. I did not think it would be published, and it wasn’t.

I have brothers and no sister, but I have two daughters. They have their own special and complex world, both for and against what exists outside their relationship. I felt that strongly in Chasseriau’s painting. For my own exploration of the painting, I drew first with neocolors and then dipped them in paint to emphasize some of the color and lines. I haven’t been doing much drawing in the past year, so it feels good to just fool around with it and see what happens.

You can see the painting and published responses here.

Castle in the Sky/the earth sings

Too much and too little of everything,
this disembodied crowd of kings and fools–
the culmination of faith is a leap into the unknown–
the spaces between are all that remains.

The details of life become blurred and distorted,
fragments scattered into ghosts
reflecting the collision of bottomless dreams and desires–
too much and too little of everything.

Plans go astray, linger unrealized.
The path is long and winding and there is no map —
what makes us think we have finally found the truth?
(this disembodied crowd of kings and fools)

Does only night reveal the secret of the star?
The past follows us no matter where we go–
how little is really necessary!
The culmination of faith is a leap into the unknown.

The earth embraces us, teeming with life–
what are we looking for?  where do we belong?
Will we recognize it when we reach our destination?–
the spaces between are all that remains.

memories are
woven into tales–
time and space
expanded
and compressed—fragments scattered
like ghosts of what is

no longer
there—we know why we
seek this thing–
Divine Light–
but there is no star, only an
endless procession

escaping
from its past—still we
always come
back again,
repeating the well trodden
paths of Holy fools–

and when our
destination finds
us what will
we see?  grace
reflecting the gift of life?
or the gold of kings?

I wrote these two poems (a cascade, and a shadorma chain) in response to a painting of the daylight travels of the Magi followed by multitudes of richly garbed men which was part of the Ekphrastic Review Holiday Challenge. These did not make the cut. But when I saw the Earthweal Challenge for the change we are, I thought they fit.

I know my prompt responses often seem to veer off course, and maybe this one is also in that category. Perhaps it stems from my sense of things not fitting properly in the world–myself included–which gives me a general inability to feel I am accurately responding to anything. But I also feel that’s where “we” are at this Solstice 2020. Changes are all around us, but it’s hard to find the proper light in which to tell exactly what they are.

with more art from the archives

and it shall come to pass

selkie whit 2s

and who am I and what is he?
and how will I keep this unborn child?
are we not all changelings?

we dwell half in night’s shades,
half in sun dappled waters–
and who am I and what is he?

far away in ancient song,
and never and always, becoming three–
and how will I keep this unborn child?

green earth or deep green sea–
our very being vibrates between–
are we not all changelings?

selkie close up s

A cascade poem for dVerse, where De has us considering sea people.  I’ve used the Child Ballad, The Great Silkie of Sule Skerry, as inspiration.  The artwork was done for a previous poem on the same subject.

There are so many beautiful versions of this song.  It has been recorded by Joan Baez, Judy Collins, Maddy Prior, June Tabor, Roger McGuinn and Solas among others.  Below are  2 very different recordings, by Steeleye Span, and Port.

Woman and Ghost

woman and ghost s

I have lost the barrier
between me and the world–
tangled in the web it weaves
to keep itself from falling apart

It holds my pieces tight
and yet the space between them
opens and shifts–
I have lost the barrier

What orbit holds my destiny?
edges come and go simultaneously
as the gaps grow wider
between me and the world

Bridges retreat and paths lead
farther away from any idea
of location—fragmented, off-center,
tangled in the web it weaves

Slowly threads expand on tides
of iridescence seen only in certain lights,
raveling random and untraceable connections
to keep itself from falling apart

woman and ghost close up s

An ekphrastic response to “Woman and Ghost”, which was gifted to me by the wonderful Claudia McGill, who has also gifted me with inspiration, support, and friendship.

You can follow her on her blogs:
https://claudiamcgill.wordpress.com/
https://claudiamcgillart.wordpress.com/
https://claudiamcgilladvice.wordpress.com/

For the NaPoWriMo day 20 prompt: “write a poem about a handmade or homemade gift that you have received”.

napo2020button1-1

The poetic form I used is cascade.

ghostlight

ghostlight shadows s

that picture in your mind–
where does it go?
inside the mirror

the memory projects
the future looking at the past–
that picture in your mind,

that dislocation of now,
that reversal of an ending–
where does it go?

who will reap
what was shown
inside the mirror?

Michael_E._Arth_-Moscow_Metro-_oil_painting,_1980

For Jane Dougherty’s Words and Pictures poetry challenge, above, a painting entitled Moscow Metro by Michael E. Arth.  She suggested a cascade poem.

ghostlight close up s

As my collage box is fairly bare in my new location, I had no children to incorporate into my collage.  I improvised with a Michelangelo sculpture from a reference book I bought at a library book sale, and cut outs from the New York Times, which comes to my door, if irregularly, these days.

Still enamored with shadows, I photographed it first with my plant shadows on top.

ghostlight s

 

abridged

abridged s

Can things become ghosts?
What crosses over
into immateriality?

The pressed flower between
the pages of a book–
can things become ghosts?

The rocks shaped by wind and rain–
the water reflecting the sun–
what crosses over?

the wings glimpsed through trees–
will we all traverse
into immateriality?

A cascade for Sue Vincent’s photo prompt, above.  It has an air of timelessness.

abridged close up s