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Barbara Blatt's poems and essays have appeared in Pearl, Askew and the The Book of Symbols: Reflections on Archetypal Images (Taschen), compiled and edited by The Archive for Research in Archetypal Symbolism (ARAS) in affiliation with the C. G. Jung Institute.  An exhibiting artist represented by Gallery 825, her visual art has been featured in Los Angeles Art Association (Prolong Press).  She can be seen reading her poems at www.poetry.la.  A native of Chicago, educated at the University of Iowa, University of Chicago, USC and UCLA, she currently lives in Santa Monica, California.

BASHO NIGHT

Water rinses my hair, glazes the white basin.
My face against a blue towel.
      ~
Four small saucers in lucid shadow.
Silence, now, like a closet of hanging coats.
     ~
Yellow shadows at the edge.
Our night is quiet and one-roomed.
      ~
Through the drapes, above patches of wind, the moon—
a perfect incision—as though the knife had come too close.

 

NO MOSS

He vanishes
from my neighborhood of glass and cloth,
        traveling in a car of mirrors,
in a stone coat, shirt, sweater, socks.
Chain link fingers, hands like fish.

A coal burns in my shoe.

They say he was my father.
Prick him, does he feel?

A nest falls from the trees.

He was all stone tower, empty
except for the singing bees.
. . . as he held his rose so carefully
                                        coming home
to what he knew best, petals
layering close and moist.

Overlapping tongues of water,
thin as butter melting in a pan.

A message in the sky dissolves.

They say Giacometti drew, erased, drew again, erased and drew
the silver-gritty core of someone.

Small tin nut on a brick shelf.
Who asked him to tick? This father.

Whose father was an orphan. Whose
mother left
        her own small children
for a lover. Photo of my dad,
arms around his brother.

On a railroad track.
Both in pants too short.

They are about to levitate.

 

CHAMBER MUSIC

They stand like a child holding yarn in a loop—they are the hands.  She is his
river, his fishnet, his niche.  He has that look.  He is ecstatic about the Respighi,
almost dematerialized.  See how she folds his aurora borealis between layers
of pleated tissue, slips it into a fragrant drawer.

Barbara Blatt
 
2011 Barbara Blatt
 

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