What does the storm set free?
Spirits stripped of flesh on their slow walk.
— “The Speed of Belief,” from Life on Mars, by Tracy K. Smith
So we both lost our fathers,
your Floyd William Smith, 1935-2008
and my Richard Alan Sharp, 1936-2007,
both engineers, yours worked on the Hubble
and mine on the fuel cell for Gemini in the 60s.
You think of the soul wandering, a man
without country, spinning, perhaps to touch
down on Earth again, through you,
while I imagine the soul, or something
like one, fueling a distant star cluster
with a power that could only be love.
And so I am left to look at you, wide-eyed
with hair exploding like a supernova,
and believe I see him there, too,
in your smile, seeing through your eyes,
your father who looked to the stars,
toward my father, burning in the night.
I participated again in SPARK, a quarterly on-line art and writing collaboration conceived, coordinated and curated by Amy Souza. And again, I collaborated with Buffalo, NY artist Jennifer Fendya. By following the links below, you’ll see 4 pairs of works. In each, either Jennifer or I provided the inspiration piece (a poem or art piece) and the other had 10 days to create a response piece. In each response, you may detect a grain of inspiration that links it back to the inspiration piece, like the tiny grain of sand that the pearl forms around.
Please have a look at the four pairs, leave comments if you’re moved to do so, and look at the other artistic pairings on Spark 33.
News report: Police catch a pigeon carrying 200 ecstasy pills hidden in a little backpack.
flying love pills to the rave
I am trying to thread the eye of the needle
that sews humblebrag stitches
onto an embroidered pillow slip
that reads, on one side, look at me,
and on the other, oh it’s nothing really,
and when you wake up, you can turn it over
so you still feel the cool fabric
on your cheek, and think of me.
We buried them in shallow graves,
eyes up, under leaves and compost.
Now come the rains, filtering
to their faces, reverse tears, you say.
If only we could drink in the sky
and make our own starchy joy.
bike wheels are spinning
spoke prayers into the sky
whipping up praise clouds
I am a parody of myself.
You are a figment
of your own imagination.
We witness multiple realities,
but mostly from inside out.
You stand in cold rain,
arms upstretched, fingers spread,
leaf and stem, trunk and root,
simulacrum of a tree.
Between sea and sky
there is earth, you and I,
wood and fire.