Arts+Culture

Arts+Culture

We Are the Eighth Day, © Melanie Weidner

Poetry

A very little thing

A very little thing is rolling
down the street at dawn,
some little yellow thing, a lemon,
rolling down the center
of the street from the little
grove just up the hill.

Has the cold of the morning
snapped its hold upon the tree?
Or did someone toss it, carelessly,
to see it mind its little business,
bundling down the little street?

Will it fall in the little creek
at the bottom and ride
the current to the sea?
Will it float there—a lemon buoy,
a yellow bobber, a little
sour island on the salt rim
of the little world?



Poetry

Dream in Sighisoara, Romania

in the train station at last asleep
(all gone down to grays—sky

—uniforms—the platform itself
and farmers back from the war

who won’t know their fields)—1943
—a gypsy father reaches sure to touch

his daughter’s face (where is she—
that turn in the trees)—bine bine—

bine copil—his fingers recalling
some landscape lost now to the dark—







Poetry

Trespassing the labyrinth

They will not see me, living out of sight down the hill,
the white-robed army of monks at prayer,
the makers of incense and beds and meals
with the smell of God about them.

They might feel me step into their pilgrimage, balancing
between the jagged and the smooth stones,
paying homage to the rock borders that turn
me closer in, farther out, maddeningly
away from the center.

This is no way to live a life.
How many times have they made these very turns
in their cloister, no labyrinth to guide them
but only the vague inner nudge?

It is the place where tortuous and torturous merge.
I take half an hour; they use half their lives.
And for what? A pile of rocks in the center,
a single life well lived?

The question, maybe, gives us pause.
It does not stop that inexorable pull,
like undertow sent to immolate a swimmer
beneath the waves,

or the ineffable peace that spreads with every step.













Film

Raunchy family values

A friend of mine has an idea for teaching youth about sex: have them view one of those graphic birthing videos that the hospital has for first-time parents, the kind that shows the crowning and the afterbirth, the agony and the joy. The kids will get the idea.
Poetry

Abandoned boat at sunrise

Up north, my wife, Felice, slipped
away with emphysema, and my work
cruised on without me—accounts balanced,
mortgages afloat.
                                    My sleep done
down here in Florida, I stand
looking out a darkened window
no one’s looking in.
                                          The morning paper
never comes too soon with its rites
of scandal and opinion. I finger
my few stocks’ shifting fractions, consult
the weather map’s puzzle,

while the percolator gurgles and sighs.
I wait for the light,
                                 wait for that moment
when Felice appears, pouring my cream,
easing my bitterness by asking, “Where
will you go today, and who will you carry?”