Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Kisses, Sea Shells, and Dora Maar

Portrait of Dora Maar
            — Pablo Picasso, 1937

Perhaps it’s not half bad to be split
down the middle, one eye watching across a bridge

of nose at the other, evincing the artfulness
of faces. This is as up-close as it gets 

to plumbing deep through non-symmetrical windows 
to the fickle soul. A chance to gaze 

from the same side of the mirror: at once
a smile’s hint and hooded skepticism. One eye’s 

dark lashes strike out like talons at the soft egg 
of the other, coddled one day, pierced the next, 

the way the egg must allow the peck; 
the eye, light.   

The Kiss
            — Gustav Klimt, 1908-1909

Wreathed in laurels and cloaked in geometry, 
he bends, as men will, to roundness. 

She bends to earth, arrayed in curves of color, 
blue-flowered hair, gold-shawled ankles

as though her way dwells in air, all zephyr 
and sun, yet rooted as a garden, toes gripped 

to grounding, body tasting body, 
its sweetness and its sweat.

Bernadette McBride is author of three full-length poetry collections, the most recent of which is Whatever Measure of Light (Aldrich Press, 2016). Her poems have appeared in the UK, Canada, numerous U.S journals and anthologies, and on PRI’s “The Writer’s Almanac” with Garrison Keillor. A former Pennsylvania Poet Laureate for Bucks County, she is a three-time Pushcart Prize nominee whose work has won several awards. She is a college English professor, serves as poetry co-editor for the Schuylkill Valley Journal, and welcomes your visit at bernadettemcbrideblog.wordpress.com

"Shell Fragment" by Nancy Canyon

The Sea Shell

by Marin Sorescu
Translated by Michael Hamburger

I have hidden inside a sea shell
but forgotten in which.

Now daily I dive,
filtering the sea through my fingers,
to find myself.
Sometimes I think 
a giant fish has swallowed me.
Looking for it everywhere I want to make sure
it will get me completely.

The sea-bed attracts me, and
I’m repelled by millions
of sea shells that all look alike.
Help, I am one of them.
If only I knew, which.

How often I’ve gone straight up
to one of them, saying: That’s me.
Only, when I prised it open
it was empty.

Nancy Canyon's paintings are published online, in print journals, and as book covers. She can be found daily working on her art in the Morgan Block Artist Studios in Historic Fairhaven, WA. She shows in Bellingham, Edmonds, Seattle, and Spokane.  See more of her work at http://canyonwriter.blogspot.com and www.nancycanyon.com.


  1. Bernadette MC Bride has managed to fuse two types of art that includes paintings and poems in one platform perfect blend that go hand in hand i would love to get some of her pieces.

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