Stings

Photo by Patrick Hendry via Unsplash : A couple of weeks ago I posted the following message on a friend’s Facebook page in response to her incredibly astute and poignant comment about why women don’t talk about sexual trauma until years later (if ever). I will ask for her permission to post her comment here…. Continue Reading →

Rites of Passage

Photo by Fabrizio Conti via Unsplash Rites of Passage : I The rock was thrown as a joke, a sleight of hand. Then, the bursting eye, the entrails- like stuff pouring out. I knew it was an eye, but it looked like an unhatched egg, the embryo throbbing with its own hunger for life. It... Continue Reading →

The Guest

Photo by Martino Pietropoli via Unsplash   The Guest : My house grows small waiting for her to leave. Today I opened the door to the cellar and it wasn’t there. I climbed the staircase to the attic— it ended in a dead wall. The bathroom I’ve been so proud of shrank to the size... Continue Reading →

Body Not Hers

Photo by Janco Ferlich via Unsplash   Body Not Hers : For my children, when they grow up 1. The darkness within me, it’s all- engulfing, viscous, and real, the mystery of its black rose still blooming. Dark objects fall in and out like planets. Mars glides by glowing red, a fascinating eye into hell.... Continue Reading →

Winter

Photo by Fabrice Villard via Unsplash : Winter : A woman writes a line in the snow and leaves. Nothing else is new in that quiet field. Large snowflakes seal in her words, an envelope, closing. Next summer, she won't remember what she has written, or why. In the wake of retreating steps, silence keeps the... Continue Reading →

Out of the Labyrinth

Image courtesy of pixabay.com : Out of the Labyrinth : In the morning the girl sits by the window, pulling dried husks of flies off the spider web. The brown spider drops from its corner on a glistening, tremulous thread, hauls itself up to inspect the damage, hairpin legs climbing the air on invisible steps.... Continue Reading →

Tentative Futures

Greg Spalenka Divinus : Tentative Futures : You try to forgive words their push and pull. In the garden, the cherry tree has sprouted buds, each one enveloping a heartbeat. You lean against the trunk, listening to the hum under its bark, remembering what it was like to carry that same echo deep in the... Continue Reading →

Alter Ego

Rainbow in Pully, August 1, 2018   Alter Ego : I didn’t know what she was: that brittle, reed-like, human-like riddle. A paper whisper. A burn. She made an ark for a language the color of loneliness. Words rushed to her. So did the clouds. It was hard to watch her drown in the rain,... Continue Reading →

Conversation

Vincent van Gogh Rain   Conversation : It’s frivolous, this rain, with its unreasonable claims on our silence. You stalk the hallway, I crush tears in my fist. I’ve taken to rearranging books on the shelf, first alphabetically, then by the year of a writer’s death. Orphan books. I seem to love them more this... Continue Reading →

Fear

Edvard Munch The Scream :   Fear : It never goes away, it only diminishes, thins out like a bookmark you forget in one of the books you now rarely read. Then you find it while dusting one day. It springs out voluptuous, huge—this bosomy aunt who always arrives out of nowhere to stay, suitcases... Continue Reading →

Déjà vu

Nikolay Nikolayevich Ge, “What is Truth?” Christ and Pilate, 1890. Image from Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, Russia : Déjà vu "No matter what comes into the house, a letter, today’s paper, you are convinced you have already seen it.” ~ Rosmarie Waldrop "The Almost Audible Passing of Time" : Nouns drop from their perches, seeking a less... Continue Reading →

Orchids

Image courtesy of The Orchid Column : Orchids : My nights are now full of dark coats buttoned up on emptiness. Black shoes carrying nothing walk out the door each morning. I wake up to layers of bricks around my body, each day one more layer, the cat already howling on top of my head—... Continue Reading →

Of Guilt

Blankets cover Swiss glacier in vain effort to halt icemelt Courtesy of phys.org : Of Guilt : You leave what you know. Your faithful companion follows you into the heart of the forest, where ferns obscure the light, where you fall asleep on wet ground, blind roots crawling over your legs toward your mouth. You... Continue Reading →

Wee Willie Winkie

Millicent Sowerby Wee Willie Winkie  :   Wee Willie Winkie : Wee Willie Winkie runs through the town, Upstairs and downstairs, in his nightgown. Rapping at the window, crying through the lock, “Are the children all in beds? Now it’s eight o’clock.”                          ... Continue Reading →

The Lion

Leonard Myburgh Airbrushed Lion Courtesy of lonehillart.com :   The Lion : Every angel is terrifying.                         ~ Rilke He comes in the dark, breaks doors, muscles his way through windows. His wings wrap around my heart like sin. His words run through my... Continue Reading →

Spectator

Gerard Gauci Scene from "Armide" at the Palace of Versailles Image courtesy of operaatelier.com :   Spectator : I’ll always be part of an audience— not the worst crowd to melt in, though observers are often portrayed as distant, uninvolved. I, too, am an observer. I watch the plot thicken and flare up toward denouement, and... Continue Reading →

The Photograph

Winter sky over Lausanne, Switzerland   :   The Photograph : It doesn’t matter what we should have argued about. Talking was something we couldn't or wouldn't do. We walked through a meadow instead, you slightly ahead and I taking pictures of things I wanted to remember, including that bloody sunset. The flowers parted before... Continue Reading →

A Weekend in Hades

Jacob van Swanenburg Sybil and Aeneas in the Underworld :   A Weekend in Hades : It starts with the creak of oars in murky waters, blood rising to the surface like goldfish. The weeds are wild with the hair of the dead. Small price to pay for a weekend in Hades. We get off... Continue Reading →

Rip Van Winkle

N. C. Wyeth Rip Van Winkle :   Rip Van Winkle   In the evening she sits on the couch. The sunset starts a fire around her head, like a halo. She reads and her hair streams down in black coils past her waist, past her knees. It hesitates when it reaches the floor, but... Continue Reading →

The Mirror

Image courtesy of kreuzberged.com : The Mirror : You lie here wide-eyed as if the icon on the wall came alive—the small hand of the woman in red robes resting on your forehead. I wish I could be happy. Tomorrow the squirm in my blood will seem insignificant. The window checkers the bedspread. Meandering sleighs of... Continue Reading →

The Road

Dan Thomsett Snow in Minster   The Road : Just above the road there was this pale hand waving at me. Dust and ashes rose in the sun, The trees seemed to be in winter. Their long, crooked limbs poked into my eyes. I stepped on patches of ice. It could have been cotton, hardened... Continue Reading →

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