Fragments

Fragments by Lee Madgwick

Sarah’s ekphrastic prompt at dVerse featured the art of Lee Madgwick. The prompt closed before I got a chance to respond, but here is my poem inspired by this painting. I may write more inspired by the others.

Fragments

Grey-furred clouds sit cat-like
ready to pounce

a breeze strokes the marsh grass—
sighs at the water-whispers,

secret murmurs heard by fish and birds
who swim and fly, here and gone because

time here is as fluid
as the endless river before me

going nowhere or everywhere,
ebbing and flowing concurrently

like conversations at a holiday dinner
where words from the past linger

and mingle with what is spoken
and what is left unsaid,

a barred door
or one open to possibility,

this world of dreams is one universe
of many where stars hum far in the distance.

Now an empty boat waits for me,
I will enter and exit many times

without remembering . . .
until I do.

The Tiny House

The Tiny House

The tiny house is unoccupied,
the dreams of the former occupants
grew too large–
they burst through windows
and drifted out the chimney.

But the walls hold their memories–
look carefully and you’ll see them,
colored tendrils, and small green vines
that twine in the shadows.

They left it all for the new owners—
dreams in the dust motes and memories
scattered like rugs,
they may bubble up like the champagne
they also left. So very thoughtful.

Tiny House by Claudia McGill, a gift from when we met in person recently

Butterflies and Crows (Revised, with audio)

Butterflies and Crows (Revised)

Early Morning Crow at Red Bank Battlefield

In the time of before
when color emerged from grey,
and butterflies swayed, seeing
blue, green, red, and yellow,
when storms erupted, and branches grew
and everything had a counterpart
in nature’s art of fractals. The stars,
the sun and moon, the black of night and day’s light
kept earth balanced, though
a small-winged tipped could cause a shift,
but mostly that was righted.

Now ice drips, and winds drift
in wayward tempest gales,
the trees are split, their roots cry out
and mycelium networks ache as they transmit
arboreal dying sounds.

You dream of the past, you dream of now
and in your dreams, you understand

that crows carry wisdom’s key—they warn
with caws–

a telling, not a reprimand,
like Casandra, what they must do

even if their truths fly by,
even if nobody listens.

My photo fits, but this is a slightly revised version of a poem I wrote in response to artworks by Gaynor Kane, Anjum Wasim Dar, and John Phandal Law for Paul Brookes’ Ekphrastic Challenge in April. You can see the art there and read the other responses. The poem seems very timely right now. I’m sharing this with dVerse Open Link Night.

Vanishing Point

Peder Severin Krøyer, Summer Evening at Skagen. The Artist’s Wife and Dog by the Shore

Vanishing Point

In summer’s late twilight,
violet waves tumble with mystery,
the clouds are shapeshifters,
now ships, now galloping horses
dipping their heads to graze.

This is the place where wishes dangle
and we are hooked–
lungs for gills, legs for voice–
no way to go back,
promises polished like sea glass
shatter on the rocks.

Five years. We still gaze at the horizon,
still listen for his voice, don’t we, Boy?
A tail wag of hope before we turn, leaving
our footprints. Blink, and they’re gone, too.

A poem for my summer ekphrastic prompt on dVerse. I’ve posted several works of art to choose from. Join us!

Day 30, Ekphrastic Challenge, My poem, Rainbow Dreams

Day 30 inspired by all three works. This is the final day of the month-long challenge. This is a san san.

Rainbow Dreams

A rainbow in my dreams–
cantaloupe sky, pink quartz beach, and light-drenched trees
dripping green, gold, blue. Here birds stop to perch
on chromatic rocks. Yet nothing remains as it seems–
shadows come, even within dreams, my mind sees
but also alters. Gulls become robins whose birdsong brings
dawn-light to forest—now, color-spray the birch
with rainbow stripes and feathers. In dreams, my heart sings.

Thank you to Paul Brookes for hosting this April Ekphrastic Challenge. It has been a wonderful experience. You can see the art and read the other responses by going to Paul’s site here.

The artists are Gaynor Kane, John Phandal Law, and Anjum Wasim Dar. Thank you for your wonderful  and inspiring art! I’m giving them a round of applause–and also one for the other poets! 👏

Day 29, Ekphrastic Challenge, My Poem, Oxygen

For the penultimate day of the challenge:

Inspired by AWD, “Oxygen”

Oxygen

From the dark, soupy universe
light emerged, the afterglow of explosion
blue-shifted here

to our primeval oceans
where microbes gobbled oxygen
and cyanobacteria sent some into the air
through photosynthesis,
generating life.

And from there, flowers bloomed,
and then came fruit,
and us, and love, and art—

microscopic particles recycled, torn apart
in the process of (re)creating space and hearts.

I am once again participating in Paul Brookes’ April Ekphrastic Challenge. Each day, I will post my poem(s) here. You can see the art and read the other responses by going to Paul’s site here.

The artists are Gaynor Kane, John Phandal Law, and Anjum Wasim Dar. Thank you for your wonderful  and inspiring art!

Day 28, Ekphrastic Challenge, My Poem, The Result

Inspired by AWD, “Politics”

The Result

With alligator smiles
they dazzled, dangling

the promise of freedom
on the tips of their sharp teeth

but the monstrous jaws snapped,
cities, trees, people fell

fertilizing the ground with blood–

no flowers bloomed,
no bird sang at dawn,
only death awakened this spring,

I am once again participating in Paul Brookes’ April Ekphrastic Challenge. Each day, I will post my poem(s) here. You can see the art and read the other responses by going to Paul’s site here.

The artists are Gaynor Kane, John Phandal Law, and Anjum Wasim Dar. Thank you for your wonderful  and inspiring art!

Day 27, Ekphrastic Challenge, My Poem: Turnings

Day 27, inspired by all three images

Turnings

The poet in the attic room,
frayed cuffs rolled, sits at the desk
by the open window–
aware of the cliché—
the garret room, drafty in winter
yet not without charm now
as the scent of sweet pea
from the garden drifts and wanders–
a memory circling
like the Ferris wheel at the fair,
straining to reach the top.

I am once again participating in Paul Brookes’ April Ekphrastic Challenge. Each day, I will post my poem(s) here. You can see the art and read the other responses by going to Paul’s site here.

The artists are Gaynor Kane, John Phandal Law, and Anjum Wasim Dar. Thank you for your wonderful  and inspiring art!

Day 26, Ekphrastic Challenge, My Poem, Catch It

Inspired by all three images for today.

Catch It

The beauty of a summer rose
is obvious,
less so, the stark winter landscape
of skeleton trees and washed-out sky–
but there–if you look closely–

my cat is beautiful to me,
your pet pig to you–

love doesn’t make us blind,
it makes us see

the lines on a face are roads
on a map
a life-journey—

traveled through places real and imagined,
in monochrome minutes or bright-hued hours,

like a pink bow bobbing in a sea of grey,
a life-preserver tossed to you—catch it.

I am once again participating in Paul Brookes’ April Ekphrastic Challenge. Each day, I will post my poem(s) here. You can see the art and read the other responses by going to Paul’s site here.

The artists are Gaynor Kane, John Phandal Law, and Anjum Wasim Dar. Thank you for your wonderful  and inspiring art!

Day 25, Ekphrastic Challenge, My Poems, Rooted and The Journey

Inspired by GK25 Wolf and Witness Tree

Rooted

Sometimes you can feel the air–
a wolf growl, a howl at the moon—
faint, like a pencil sketch,
but there

it takes hold
rooted, like a tree bearing witness
to your soul.

Inspired by all three images for today.

The Journey

You sail the endless grey ocean,
a monochrome vista, the sea of despair
surrounds you

the color of the grey wolf
that sheltered under the ancient tree
while you sat above, a young boy
hugged by its strong branches
and rocked gently by the wind
until awakened by dawn’s pulsating light

as now—
your ship illuminated in the canary yellow glow
flies into the peacock blue sky.

I am once again participating in Paul Brookes’ April Ekphrastic Challenge. Each day, I will post my poem(s) here. You can see the art and read the other responses by going to Paul’s site here.

The artists are Gaynor Kane, John Phandal Law, and Anjum Wasim Dar. Thank you for your wonderful  and inspiring art!