I should be working on a Philosophy paper right now, but I think it’s time I start posting my writing. What’s the point of writing if no one else reads it? Here’s an ekphrasis poem I wrote last year based on Jackson Pollock’s Lavender Mist (1950):
No. 1 (1950): A Triptych
I imagine this painting on the floor:
I stand on the edge of a bridge, look down
at the metallic waves. My hands wrap
around the rusted railing, tremor
as each car speeds past. I want
to fall into lavender mist, dissolve
until my veins spread across the water
like the black scars across the stretched
There is no boundary between falling asleep
and into a dream. Only the flat dark fields
beneath eyelids that soon pixelate, transform
into rising slate storm clouds. I lie
on the canvas, gallons of paint cascade
onto my body –
my skeleton cements itself, refuses
to run from the sharp, black shadow
hands that claw at my eyes, twist
my esophagus. I call out your name –
swallow more spilled paint instead.
Silver-blue blobs and streaks of white
make winter in this lavender forest.
I walk through the birch bones
and see the whirls of my fingertips
in their bleached bark. I carve
a heart into one, draw a crack
between the halves and lose
track of my footprints. Some leaves
still cling to their green, hang
and shiver from their branches
like half-formed thoughts, abandoned
at their dendrites’ ends. I walk
in circles, try to follow the clouds.
I find shed snakeskin nailed
to a tree in the shape of the moon.
It shimmers iridescent.