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Gentian

Gentian

The below poem, an original by Claire Cheney, opens with a plunge into the feeling and possibilities of one single, potentially mundane, color; a color that changes and delivers new sensations of heat and cold, hard slaps and deadly wet hugs, rapture in reverse, and fear of the ultimate unknown. Blue. Claire’s work appears elsewhere in the magazine (also originally from Volume 1, Part 3), this time a translation, delivering a much quicker dose of the use of color to transcend the need to understand, making room for simple, rapid, extra-sensory experience.

Gentian

By Claire Cheney

let me guide myself with the blue, forked touch of this flower

down the darker and darker stairs, where blue is darkened on blueness.

— D.H. Lawerence

Not the yellow smirk

of hyssop nor the bright

breath still pressed in the lungs

of Umberto Pelizzari

as he plunged salt-deep

two-hundred thirty-six feet.

Blue to pleat shadows

pull and engulf the gleams

in flaming skirts.

Umbrella of sea-weight

over the Mariana trench—

blueness darkening,

blazing down through

an echo rock-dark,

words don’t come out,

but pass away

sinking dark-blue to dwell

on the abyssal plain.

Hanging our heads

tongued and flickering

like cepheids we

blue flowers are lost to

the dark red shift,

family of bitterness.

Katie's Corner -- Wishing Well

Katie's Corner -- Wishing Well

Dillard's Eclipse

Dillard's Eclipse