I'm in a poetry phase.
I recently acquired several additions of
and I'm enjoying them very much.
A few of my favorites from Vol. 10, No. 2, Fall 2004....
She Dreams Her Death
by Alice Pettway
She fills the bathtub with cranberries
They pile up on her belly
then pour over her edges
and slip beneath her,
crushed against the porcelain.
Their rough-tongued juice colors her back
and trickles into her navel.
It rises until she can dip her chin
down into it
and let it into the corners of her mouth.
Her stained hands flit over her face,
leaving little kiss-prints on her skin.
by Melissa Fair
- for Elizabeth Short, the Black Dahlia
A poor woman climbs the stairs of a strange house
her whole life. Each year is a rented room
where furniture must be rearranged to hide the stains
of ghosts. She examines the worn edges
of everything. The threadbare rug. The door stained
by years of leaving. There are always repairs to be made.
Each night she reconstructs herself. A good black dress
and red lipstick camouflage her empty purse
and the bad teeth behind her tight smile. For the price
of a drink, someone can hold her close enough
to feel her heart beat. Some dark bird caught
in her chest. A certain man might ache to touch
that fluttering. To take an oily feather
as a souvenir. Like anything else fleeting,
sometimes a woman's desperate beauty
is her undoing. When she sees her reflection
the mirror opens its silver mouth
- an empty space or a missing part; a gap, a void.
by Robin E. Sampson
She traces the edges, sees only minus.
Examines the negative space where
she resides, self-defined by lack.
Weathered fragments peel away
from her wall, litter the ground.
What is missing cannot be
replaced or even reproduced.
Separation forms the patterns, the
constellations are shaped as much from
blackness as from stars. Chaos creates order.
She will learn to value ma*
*ma - negative space, from the Japanese art tradition