Features – 15th August 2010 – Reaching Out

This morning I was moderating all the art and writings that had come in over the past hours and I took my time over it with the view that it is my turn to do the features today. I am so glad it that I get to do the features once every month as there is always so much wonderful art and writings for me to choose from, if anything too much!

The one that inspired this feature made me think of why we do what we do and why it is so important that we do. For each poem I chose a picture that for me encapsulated the spirit of the writing.

Cosimopiro, you inspired this week’s features with your most wonderful poem. 🙂

THE ECHO OF EMPTINESS

I see you
gorge
on generous banquets,
python like,
swallowing whole
to gratify
a hollow unending
without
ever savouring
its many delicacies.

I watch you
quaff
aged juice
from the blood of grapes,
imbibing
intoxicating potion
into numb stupor
but
never relishing
divine nectar.

I spot you
pluck
tender, ripe fruit
craving fingers
bruising,
covetous lips
sucking soft flesh
but
only tasting
bitter seeds.

I hear you
rant
the madness
of self delusions
reverberating
in a vacuum
of unrealized dreams
without
ever listening
to the silence between.

Together we stand
gazing
into clear night sky
scanning
our destinies
across time’s hardened face
but
you only see
the darkness
betwixt the stars.

I recognize you,
restless,
eyeing me,
reflecting
my own wilderness
in waiting,
ready to spring
and capture
my final
berry of grace…….

…….and I wonder…….

is it best
to have company
in the void
or to feel lonely
in Paradise?

If I was to share
this morsel of joy
will it satiate
your wanton appetites
or
will I stand
where you are now,
an echo
skipping
in our emptiness
across the flat plains
of infinity
searching
for watering holes
to quench
our thirsty wanderings?

I see you
behind the looking glass
see me,
with your pleading eyes
and I with wary glance
pass the flesh
of my fruit
into your outstretched hand,
the seed of which
I keep safe
to plant in my heart,
to watch over it
in its dormant state
and nurture it
when it takes root
and buds,
in the hope
that it will bear
more fruit.

© Cosimopiro

… and here’s Martin’s wonderful image to go with it.

The Heart Of Everything

The Heart of Everything

© Martin Muir

This next poem touched me deeply:

The Ecstatic Air

I think about God and I see Him in my situation
this situation entangled in thorns and priceless misery,
whenever I move forward I am behind myself
living my life trying to catch up,
but I stumble and I fall in slow motion into that quagmire of grief
I am lost without you, and am lost with you,
If only I could learn how to breathe other people’s stale air,
if only I could live on the stale emotions of others,
and on their salty breaths and recycled kisses
my lovers and your lovers exhausted and torn up in the blender
of divorce and no reconciliation,
please don’t come back to me
God doesn’t murder, He gives us numbers in the womb
we are living, and we breathe, the ecstatic air,
I don’t think about yesterday, and the sand that stuck
to my toes on the beach, and the kisses you left upon my heart,
I can’t think about what broke us apart, the waves that crash,
and the imposssible task of holding onto them,
Time slipped through the cracks of my dreams,
my daughter has grown and is the teenager I once was
but I was silly then, full of naitivite dressed badly,
and hid behind a shy smile then
the illness in our souls became the signatures we signed
in our sleep and we still dream to escape to
we forge similarities to make the differences bearable,
we’ve attempted to love each other, but only end up
loving ourselves,
pretending we haven’t lived through this nauseuous nightmare before

Pretending we just met, when we’ve known each other for centuries,
we married ourselves to the lies we believe, and we can’t commit to
the memories that we lived,
I’ll write until I can find the words to paste the years we ripped to shreds
and wasted back together
I’ll dance until I spin myself useless and faint dead away,
until I can get back to the precise moment you walked away,
to the second you knew you didn’t love me
to the moments my voice sickened you,
to the time you became my jailor, and I lived the sentence
of missing you, and spent years trying to get back there to that
space I offended you, when we offended each other, and spit each
other out like chewed tobacco,
when our uses outlived us,
when God seemed to forget us,
when the angels stopped singing, and the demons descended
and the howling of our anger became the reasons we stayed
pasted to the wounds of our past, and to the expressions of our emptiness
when loneliness became the beating heart of our existences
and we wandered through hundreds of miles of wilderness
the dishevelled forest of our lust, a lost cause of animal instinct
the grave of the intimacy we lost, the priest that read us our last rites
when God couldn’t keep us alive anymore, when dying seemed better
I bit the ecstatic air like bits of glass to my tongue, like chunks of diamond
to my teeth,
breaking and chipping teeth until my gums bled the life of me away,
sometimes there isn’t a happy ending and lovers are really strangers
who got confused in the rain.

© copyrightmisfit19652009

I found the same sense of connection in this image:

Running thru the fire

Randy Montheith Running thru the fire

Randy Montheith Running thru the fire

© Randy Monteith

… and again a deep sense of connection and longing:

Sonnet To My Soulmate

Dear skin and hands and all things sweet and pure
containing legends deep within the bone,
and holding old romance in their allure
pull me in dreams of you and me alone –

Alone in white rooms, fantasized by me;
alone in orphaned gardens, saved by you;
alone in white-washed castles by the sea;
alone in meadows pale and soaked in dew.

The beauty of your life is intricate
although you may not see its rambling grace;
you’re made of candlelight and fires lit
to warm the pallid shadows on my face.

My spirit flies to you and now I’m whole,
and sweetly, gently, I embrace your soul.

© lilynoelle

… perfectly expressed here:

lovers

vampvamp lovers

vampvamp lovers

© vampvamp

… this is why we put ourselves out there:

The Prodigal Daughter

Thanks to a class offered by a
soft spoken South American professor
who preaches the gospel of creativity
I am whole again.

Seeking the power of steel beams and girders
I had tossed my Muse (my dearest friend) into the sea.
I needed muscle
not watercolor dreams leading nowhere.

I learned to weld and solder
to read blueprints and gauge distances
to hammer and sweat in the sun
until mine was as big as his.

I forgot how to cry.

Finally one day in class (for three credits)
I walked alone across the bridge that
I had built with my own two hands
and found my Muse

waiting
like an indulgent mother
for me to call her name.

Now words and colors and images
leap and dance before my eyes
and I paint golden wildflowers on my bridge
and I sing purple poems
and my tears fall freely now
because I have come home again,
transformed.

It is indeed a form of prayer.

© Maggie Vlazny

…and here this feeling of connection and being part of everything and being yourself is perfectly shown:

The Guardians

MoonSpiral The Guardians

MoonSpiral The Guardians

© MoonSpiral

… and a great sense of being part of it all and being yourself:

Whales on the cusp of everything

Upon waking, before the whale’s sleep drives in and
out of my eyes, I sit: taking in, taking out, turning off—

turning on until a smile births on my face in the shape
of a lightening dark spark—breathing and blooming

in the heart of infinity’s shadow. I am dead; and
more alive than any thing. My heart grows a mouth,

here, beneath and above the pitch of the sea—a baby
in the arms of a forgetful young mother; a whale singing

down the shipping lane sea. When my thumbs are
the only ones still breathing, I rise, a rice-paper basket,

empty, in the fist of the universe, a photo of love
in my pocket, beating with the fragrance of fruit.

© Sesheshet 8 14 2010

… and the connection continues:

after the rain has come

Ingz after the rain has come

Ingz after the rain has come

© Ingz

… ending it with a heartwrenching poem that almost made me cry:

Freeing Myself

sometimes I get soo angry
soo mad I cant even cry
holding that blade to my skin
contemplating suicide

I think of all the times
that I’ve been pushed to the break
my hands are shaking with hate
I dont know how much more I can take

I wish the world would grow silent
everyone would just go away
lifes becoming too much of a struggle
each and every fucking day

I put on my smile
I’m happy is my constant lie
when deep down I am screaming
wishing I could just die

give myself freedom and peace
its not too much to ask
but my mind is slipping
no longer in my grasp
I have too many secrets
that I just cant get past
but I smile real bright
cover it all with my mask

I’ve got alot of issues
that already weight me down
but people keep fucking with me
pushing me deeper into the ground

I dont know what to say
to make my life alright
sometimes I’m soo lonely
I cry myself to sleep at night

then there are the days
where I dont want to leave my bed
I hate it soo much
these voices in my head

I just want to end it all
the pain is to much
the emotions are spilling
I’m loosing grip on the clutch

I want to rip out of my skin
breakaway and be free
no more pain or anger
I just want to be the old me

I want to smile
I want to love life
I dont want to hate myself
I dont want to hold this knife

I’m sorry…I can’t
and you’ll always wonder why
I just needed to be freed
and now I am….goodbye.

© JaNae Boswell


… and leaving you with an image that shows all the longing and heart breaking loneliness of JaNae’s poem:

so much emotion

cerphotography so much emotion

cerphotography so much emotion

© cerphotography

I hope you enjoy this week’s features, Sybille xo

Advertisements

I’m redecorating with your love – by JaNae Boswell

This poem by JaNae Boswell is something you could translate visually in such dark, twisted way. For now, let’s just appreciate her words.

I’m redecorating with your love

Your love covers the wall
as I drag the razor in a quick slice
the stains you’ll see are a price
for breaking my heart..

Your love drenches the wall
the whiteness slowly disappears
like paper soaking up the ink
of our own scarlet letter..

You love sprays the wall
like my Chanel No. 5
the stale scent of rusting metal
consumes our apartment air..

Your love smears the wall
like paint from an angry artist
I express my painful creativity
with each droplet spilled..

Your love washes the wall
maroon water still so wet
like the showers we use to take
cleaning ourselves as we made love..

But now it drips down the wall
in trickles of crimson blood
my goodbye signature in cursive
With love,
JaNae

Features – 23/05/2010

My turn again. 🙂

I love doing features as there are so many fabulous images and great writes to choose from. The only difficulty is that I can only choose six of each. 😦

This time I’ve chosen portraits for the image features. There’s something about the face that’s amazing and these are all wonderful. See for yourself.

The first one is

The Illusion by Cynthia Lund Torrol

I love the emotion and the mystery int his one. And it includes one of the most amazing flowers ever – the Bird of Paradise flower.

The Illusion by Cynthia Lund Torrol

The Illusion by Cynthia Lund Torrol

I’ve teamed it up with

i know everything by greeneyedlady

i know
the depth and breadth
of everything you felt for her
i know the joy
and the elation
i know the sadness
and the devastation
i know everything
you’ve tried to hide
every sweet nothing
every passionate embrace
and every tortured goodbye
i know
i’ve seen it all there in your eyes
you try to pretend she didn’t matter
you try to convince yourself
that you can come back
and i will fill the void
and you think i don’t know
that you’re losing the battle
but i know everything

The second one I selected is

It’s about time by Terry Hinkle.

There’s something so fabulous about this. It makes you wonder what she’s thinking, who she’s looking at.

It's about time by Terry Hinkle
It’s about time by Terry Hinkle

I thought this one worked well with

Sex, death and violence

by Chitrali

Tonight I want sex and violence,

And death.

Oh yes, Death – not of many, not grisly, not butchered nor ‘arty’…
just ‘that’ Death.
Literally.

Yes, ‘that death’ of ‘that one’.
Y’ know the one I mean.

I want to let The Beast out.
I want it to rip and tear and shred to pieces that,
Which it must.
Serve, it’s own justice.

For in ‘that death’, lies it’s own slaying.
For with ‘that death’, there may be no more Beast remaining,
After, either.

With ‘that death’,
I might begin to be born anew…

After all, aren’t all births violent and red?:
A near-death, of one to create another?
A near-death of 2, to become one?

With ‘that death’, sex and violence,
Re-born,
like no other.

One of her many fabulous poems. 🙂 This on struck my with it’s intensity and power.

Perfect Day, Elise by Duffboy

was my third choice. I know, I know, it’s not a portrait, but it qualifies for mystery. This caught my eye the first time I saw it and I just loved it. 🙂

Perfect Day, Elise by Duffboy
Perfect Day, Elise by Duffboy

I teamed it up with

MR. FREER (EMMA)reworked by 8upchef

Monday 13:59
John Freer walks along Ludlow Avenue. A stranger calls out, “Come to the Freebird Baptist Church! Hear the VanZant Choir perform!” Freer accepts a brochure from the crier, and walks on. On the Back is written,

Ms. Emma Mays
14 W 40th
Ovarian. Inoperable

John drops the brochure in the next trash can, and carries on.

Tuesday 8:10
Ms. Emma Mays feels, what she believes is a mosquito, on the back of her leg, and waves it away.

Tuesday 8:12
Emma boards the #8 headed uptown. She sits in her favorite seat, lays her head back, and closes her eyes forever.

Wednesday 15:16
John enters his apartment to find a single Red Rose and a card. It reads simply…

John,
Thank You!
Emma.

John’s heart warms, as a vibration comes from his phone.

This is one fabulous story – just the bare bones, work it out yourself – but marvellous because of it. I love the way it includes the reader and makes the reader flash out the gaps.

My next choice was another not quite portrait, but again it qualifies for mystery and I love the way the light has been used.

Tracey Mac‘s When hope and dreams are far away

When hopes and dreams are far away by Tracey Mac
When hopes and dreams are far away by Tracey Mac

I thought it goes well with

Janis Zroback‘s story The Old Place

At the end of the story I had all those questions and loved the fact that I got to make up the answers all by myself… 🙂

The Old Place

Frank wanted to drive up to the Old Place one more time..

I didn’t want to go…after all we had not been there for more than 30 years and it had changed hands many times since then…why rake up the past!!..too much had happened there that I did not want to revisit…the place always gave me the creeps anyway and since the incident..well I didn’t even want to think about that…

Besides it was too cold…it was December and snow was in the air…the Old Place was miles away…what if we got stuck on that god forsaken road again…but no.. he felt he had to go and I finally gave in…we loaded up the car with the remaning stuff and headed towards Old Farm as it was still called, even though it had not been a farm since the 50s.

Soon we left the paved highway and turned off on to the rutted dirt road, the car labouring over the ridges and sinking into the many holes, splashing muddy water as high as the windows….I marvelled at the sameness of the landscape…nothing had changed….it seemed stuck in the past century…

Just when I thought we’d never get there in one piece we turned the corner and there it was..in silence we drew up and got out of the car…
Shocked, I gasped “where is the house?”… all that seemed to be there were the two outbuildings and a heap of rubble where the house used to be….
The sheds looked lost, bereft of their reason for living…there was snow already on the ground up here and I could see clouds approaching…the house was gone…there was no reason to stick around…I sighed with relief…now we could turn right back again…..I tugged Frank’s arm…

“Let’s go” I urged…”there’s no reason to stay”…but he shook me of as if I were a fly and moved forward, not saying a single word..reluctantly I followed…the hills seemed to press in on us and I felt the old familiar claustrophobia as I got nearer to the buildings..

“You’re not going inside?”…”there’s nothing there..look no more house…they must have torn it down“

He kept on walking closer as if he was being drawn forward against his will…suddenly I stopped…damn..my shoe had stuck in the mud…why didn’t I change before we left?…I stooped to free it and then straightened up…Frank had disappeared…

Suddenly frightened, I ran towards the sheds…”Frank Frank” I called…but there was no answer…

“Frank” I screamed again…but the only sound was the silence of the Old Place.

I really, really love this portrait – the natural light, the slight smile, the beautiful face… there’s just something captivating about this.

It’s just the little glances by Matthew Dawkins

It's just the little glances by Matthew Dawkins
It’s just the little glances by Matthew Dawkins

To go with it a great poem of self affirmation and inner strength.

….never enough? by JaNae Boswell

When they look at me
I wonder what they see
Another mixed breed
My ancestors history

Just a incomplete girl
To never belong in the world
Never to fit in
Not the right color of skin

Too Dark
Too Light
I’m just not quite..
good enough to meet your standards…

have you felt it..
Unaccepted
Rejected
Well I can never be perfected
from the colors they see

will they ever understand
how it’s been so rough
how it can be so tough
that to some I will never be enough

Should I just swallow my pride?
Should I just stand aside?
and let them walk all over me..

On either side I choose
There is someone I might lose
Its given me an open mind
It’s made me colorblind
I only have eyes for the beauty in life

Well this is what everyone must see
I’m still me
Even if to you I’m not right
African American and Chippewa
my French blood makes me light
I don’t give a fuck what you say
the world is revolutionizing its histories ways
Sorry I’m here to stay
haven’t you heard the news
I’m starting up a brand new day.

The final selection is

Enjoying the Applause by Berns

I love the emotion and depth of this portrait. It’s of the moment and captures it so well…

Enjoying the applause by Berns
Enjoying the applause by Berns

The final written offering is

Macolm by Trenchtownrock

I let the poem speak for itself. I found it touching, powerful and intense.

You are Malcolm
the red headed negro boy
who manifested
before the eyes of sixties America
into that venom that needed to be silenced
you were never Martin
who preached kissed the other cheek
while the other cheek
shackled him
with memories of middle passage
you were never Gandhi
who fought his British daddy
with hunger strikes
non violence
while his head got split opened
waiting for heaven’s redemption

you were the by any means necessary negro
who stood by his window
with loaded AK47
gently peeking through curtains
ready to avenge the loss of your papa
his papa
slave masters
whose lack of humanity
was written out of history books
and whose legacy still can be smelled
their fragrance hidden in America’s bosoms

you brought dignity to the ghetto
with your well dressed Islam
telling the black man to love self
before the white man can love him
you found a new respect for women
and stood on crate boxes mountain high
calling out house Negroes
who thought they had arrived
with the shilling and pence
dispense
their chicken came home to roost

but before that twenty one gun salute
was fired in your chest
while your wife and children
witnessed your funeral dress rehearsal
you brought America to the mirror
one more time
telling her about her apathy
for the colored
letting her taste some of her vile
as your blood flowed
down the river of soul brothers
with Martin
and Evers
washing away the stench
momentarily
etching your offerings
that will be forever read
on America’s tombstone.

I hope you enjoy this week’s features. They certainly impressed me. 🙂