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Just thought I’d share the link for this video which will be nationally syndicated and probably end up on local-channel-3-in-the-morning TV. Lovingly hosted by the dear, Stephen Kopel.

The reading is ekphrastic poetry featuring the art of Sarah Curtiss, Ginger Slonaker and Flaming June by Frederic Leighton. Thank you to producers John Rhodes and Clara Hsu.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXpR6wIcsLM&feature=youtu.be&a

 

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I participated in Erika Guzman’s Facebook 24-hour poetry slam today and wrote a poem for Barbara Hewitt Pilat’s art piece shown below.

merging

i can barely see you

headless beauty

root legs and branched arms reaching sunlight

infinite bright and sky…beyond my frame

mind lost

scraping my naked knees to get into your soul

losing my head in your bigness

gigantic madre

oso de moreno, your heart runs deep

ancestor mother, your skin so different from mine

i climb and struggle in this life

to reach inside something, to find the connection

great one, hold me in your nest, take me into your arched arms

and let me merge my trunk

with yours

 

peek-a-boo by Barbara Hewitt Pilat

peek-a-boo by Barbara Hewitt Pilat

 

Ekphrastic poetry = poems written for/inspired by an art piece.

I will co-feature on Saturday, April 25th, 7:30 p.m. at Florey’s Bookstore in Pacifica. I will read poetry inspired by art from local artists Ginger Gillilland Slonaker, Sarah Curtiss and William Solis, plus one from Pre-Raphaelite artist, Frederic Leighton. I am honored to read with Florey’s open mic host, Sherri Rose Walker and Pacifica Poet Laureate, Dorsetta Hale who will also feature that night.

"Mystery" by Sarah Curtiss

“Mystery” by Sarah Curtiss

Memory Recall by Ginger Slonaker See more of her work at http://www.gingerslonaker.com/

Memory Recall by Ginger Slonaker
See more of her work at http://www.gingerslonaker.com/

 

Flaming June by Lord Frederic Leighton

Flaming June by Lord Frederic Leighton

PS: I will be taped on Stephen Koppel’s Special Edition show at the end of this month. So excited! Details to follow.

Performing this poem Saturday, November 21 at Shell Dance Nursery in Pacifica with Mr. Tom Poole on trumpet. 2-4 p.m. FREE. Also performing with Daniel Swetlik on guitar and Tom a few original songs written by Daniel Swetlik and Maurine Killough. Hope to see you there!

this is an ekphrastic poem written for Sarah Curtiss‘ art pictured below
listen to the audio clip as you read the poem

jazz, you are a mystery to me

curly notes cue up to fugues on acid

sprightly tuned colors ignite velvet fur juxtaposed with electric fusion

noodle highways drive sound from a high speed chase

to the color of cool, green avocado

striped trumpets pop like stars in your xylophone hair

jester music, you are two faced

you climb me from your creamy lips, just to nudge me to the suicide drop of a sky scraper

jazz shaman, mystery witch, you pull me deep into your fractals

lose me in your saxophone eyes

then hang on your obtuse hooks my ears

waiting to be rescued in a wave of piano or left to drown in a Minor C

mysterious jazz, you shun convention

you spark infused parody

soothe, then confuse and take hostage our sensibilities of rhythm

and into the smoky night

of slippery hot pepper butter-love

you stand guard over the rebellious realm of

the undefinable

keeping the lock safe from the key

its mystery

"Mystery" by Sarah Curtiss

“Mystery” by Sarah Curtiss

 

 

 

 

I am delighted that City Arts San Mateo will feature my musical poetry at their next Salon on Wednesday, July 30th.

Art Reception for Sarah Soward will start at 6:30. I will present my poetry with music accompanied by my hero-husband, Daniel Swetlik on bass and guitar, and drum circle extraordinaire, Fern Filner. One art piece by Sarah Curtiss will be on display for the ekphrastic poem I’ve written for it. Special guest, Thomas J. Burks will join in and present a song from his screenplay, Farm Boy Mantra, as well as a song he wrote for one of my poems.

This event is FREE! Light refreshments will be served. Open Mic will follow. If you are local, I hope you will come for this fun and creative evening. Arrive early to get on open mic list.

City Arts Poetry+Music 7-30-14

this is an ekphrastic poem written for Sarah Curtiss’ art piece here.

queen

she looked at me from across the room with such pleading recognition

that it flickered my own history to reflect hers

those crooked eyes bore into me

and i remembered myself in her former life

here she was craning her neck to set her uneven eyes

into my wrapped up paper face

her eye holes stared into my perfected façade

revealing the mirror we were for each other

i saw our stories unfolding same pages but different books

centuries apart in a moment all collapsing together

but the more i stared at her, the more she began to come apart

she split into pieces, and her lips became a jumble

her face blossomed a Picasso

and our stories split into alternate universes…

her eyes seemed lost and crazy to me now, familiarity turned to intractable madness

our ancestral kinship had met its end and diverged into radical eccentricities

she was trapped behind those Picasso eyes

while i feigned safety from

inside the square frame

of my paper walls

water pipe flower

sun goddess Extraordinaire

your color is freedom that bursts a fire

pride bounds from your spanish valleys

water pipe flower
your dream is a virgin no man shall undo

your kaleidoscope arms swallow hearts and dare imaginations

to dream of something more seductive, more intriguing than your cosmic beauty

Extraterrestrial, child of Pleiades

you will never be blue

oh dahlia, dahlia

goddess doll of earth

you will forever capture us

and leave us longing

in desire

photo courtesy of Sarah Curtiss see her book: Dahlias, Dahlias, Dahlias at her website graceartgroup.com

photo courtesy of Sarah Curtiss
see her book: Dahlias, Dahlias, Dahlias at her website graceartgroup.com

this is an ekphrastic poem written for Sarah Curtiss’ art piece below by the same title

this is the way life is

with its boxes and swirls

appearing as snares, suction cups and mazes

they are everywhere

you step into them everyday

get boxed in

circle around and around

then trip into a dead end

before you see clearly, after so many lifetimes

that the boxes are windows

the swirls are clouds to carry you away

the rubik’s cubes are your own lethal thoughts

so i lie down to not think

i am awake but i do not participate

i recline quietly as

ancient labyrinths order my hair

secret mazes mark my body

sacred swirls coil my mind

cyclones siphon my drops

i shut my drain pipes

to all that is going on

like music in the background

and fall into myself

into my infinity

spiral like a snake where gaia meets the cosmos

let the energy flow

fly above where the patterns take helix shape

until i am free of the circling thoughts

material traps

and can wrap my being around

the divine pattern

of all there is

Meditation by Sarah Curtiss see more of her art at graceartgroup.com

Meditation by Sarah Curtiss
see more of her art at graceartgroup.com

this is one of my favorite pieces by artist Sarah J. Curtiss. An ekphrastic poem I have written for it follows. If you’d like to listen to it,
blue

lost in the sway of
umpha-tumpha
umpha-tumpha
umpha-tumpha-tat

orion is electrified
the stars never felt so good sizzling into my pores
this twilight solitude is sanctuary

i hitch a ride on the beat
it carries me to that threshold
between sea and celestial
between green and violet
where I fade into the rhapsody

beyond self
beyond material
beyond the blood and the breath

beat
in accordance
tune
to the music

of the ultimate
the sacred
the spiraling deep inside
to the realm
of divinity

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Poetry Reading in Pacific Grove

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