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So It Was…
   Inspiration for Kenneth Vinton’s “So It Was Until It Wasn’t”

So it was, until it wasn’t.


Courage, risk-taking…
Women’s words open Pandora’s door
          a crack, a sliver of light
          strewn on the floor, on the wall—

Graffiti in shadow.

Alleged, alleged… 
          Money and Power,
          enough to buy Silence…

Until, until…
          One voice was heard
          and one voice joined another,
          and another and another…

Speaking Truth to the mighty.

A few fell like dominoes
          were fired, removed,

said they were Sorry—
          Sorry for locking the door,
          Sorry for exposing themselves,
          Sorry for forcing themselves on another.

Some thought it funny—
          Exploiting power,
          women as objects, used and abused.

So it was, until it wasn’t.
So it is, until it isn’t.

   ~ Lorraine Walker Williams

So It Was Until It Wasn't   by Kenneth Vinton   ArtPoems 2018
Fort Myers Beach   by Claude Lyles   ArtPoems 2018
Love Sees
   Inspired by Claude Lyles’ “Fort Myers Beach”

What do you see?
Do you see the towel, the sand, the sun?
Do you mind if I ask you to look,
a little deeper?
So again, I ask, "What do you see?"

I see me!
Yes, this is me!
I am a beautiful mess,
can't you see ?!?!

My pain became my passion 
and now I have purpose,
I took my mess 
and put it in a message...
Beautiful You Are !

Yes, that's me,
I finally realized 
I am Enough !
the little girl
who wrote in her journal 
​to hide her pain 
never thought 
she was beautiful 
enough, stands 
before you asking 
you to take another look,
"What do you see?"

her hope is that you see me,
but not just me, she hopes 
you see the beautiful light
that shines brightly 
throughout this beautiful 
Love sees you and me.

  ~ Jamilla D. Brooks
Monday Night Drama in Four Acts  (Dedicated to: AML)
   Inspiration for artist Beverly Taht’s “Memories”

Act I
She arrives in a flurry of excitement. Alive, eager.
Almost no other place either of us would rather be.
Maybe because she’d heard of promises of a new 
camera, a reward for Montreal cell phone miracles.

Her eye is already that of a travel magazine artista.
There were two cameras to pick from. Intuitively,
she mastered both of them, and went right to work,
snapping farm silos, a mile away and flowers on table.

Act II
As the sun set, one last picture, we came in for a 35 mm. surprise.
I had found pictures, dozens of them, of her kids from long ago, moments
captured in the richness of what only her kids knew from a great mother.
No diamonds or four more cameras could have made her cry as softly.

It was time for throwing together a dinner, pitching in with wise 
chopping, slicing, dicing and simmering, a perfect gourmet event.
Easy talk, of friends, of hope, lots about family, ours just having the
Annual Family Reunion, babies and teens, music, kindness and changes.

Act IV
Quick clean up, set up the couch pillows for TV, ready for the adventure.
A TV Documentary on PBS. The Rare Arc, still photographs of animals headed for extinction around an indifferent world, captured by a genius 
who has given 25 years to portraying 500 species while they are still with us. Joel Satori. Thanks. We watched with deep admiration and stewed apple rhubarb compote with full-fat Yogurt nestled in each other’s arms, survivors.

A perfect ending for a woman who someday will be traveling and writing
about what she sees, and one day capturing a busy compote specialist in
an orchard on a day he’s collecting bruised peaches, when all she really
wants is him to go with her where National Geographic sends her, forever.

   ~ Sidney B. Simon
Memories   by Beverly Taht   ArtPoems 2018
   Inspired by William Kramer’s “Mother and Child”

As a seed in the womb, my heartbeat was yours. 
The key to me flowed through our shared cord. 
When my life spilt out from you, I held on tight. 
I suckled at your breast, made your body my bed. 
I tugged on you till lifted in arms that never tired.

As an adult, those arms opened, set me free,
to imprint my own DNA on the universe. My 
life mimicked its spirals, circles, chaos & calm.  
I fell into black holes. Bore a cross of sorrows. 
I rose in a confetti of light. Wore a crown of stars. 

As a senior, I began to slow down, to slide inward.  
Pieces of me aged into my faded memories of you. 
Skin thinned into liver spots traced from your body. 
Hair whitened into your curly cap of lambswool.
When I drew my last breath, we were one again. 

   ~ Marilyn Mecca

Mother and Child   by William Kramer   ArtPoems 2018
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Roses At the Range
   Inspiration for artist Lesley Morrow’s “Soldiers Falling”

      A poem of witness ….for those who come home broken
      and those who try to help.

In gorgeous Texas weather he shoots
for an hour then pauses,
admires red roses round the perimeter—
same as those his wife planted at home

while he was gone for a third tour. 
They’re happy, these roses, dancing—
and he dances too till his buddies stare
at him, each other, him again.

      Back to freaking Iraq?

Color deepens as the roses dance,
advance toward him,
redder and redder, too red
as if bleeding, falling, and he

      No! I won’t go!

slams in a magazine as they aim
at him and he shoots first—
one shot, one down, then the other—
empties the magazine,

and red roses burst into bloom
on their chests.

   ~ Mary Beth Lundgren
Soldiers Falling   by Lesley Morrow   ArtPoems 2018
Oh No, You Know What's Next   by Paul David Adamick   ArtPoems 2018
In the Garden of Eden
   Inspired by Paul David Adamick’s “Oh No, You Know What’s Next!”

I’ve often wondered, was it boredom
Made Eve pluck that forbidden treat?
Telling Adam, oh so coyly,
“Try it, darling, it’s so sweet!”
When the serpent slithered up to her
And suggested she should eat.
The fruit would grant them knowledge,
The reptile did insist,
This possibility appealed so much,
She simply couldn’t resist.

In their garden, it was perfect,
Nothing unpleasant there,
No contention or pollution,
Just peace and fragrant balmy air.
An array of all of nature
Laid out at their feet,
Theirs to pick and choose from,
Their life was quite complete.
Perhaps God in all His wisdom
Forgot to delete one flaw
From His new creation
For it does affect us all.
We share a love of power,
And it certainly does seem true,
Adam and Eve’s choice to disobey
Destroyed their paradise for two.

So the next time you encounter someone,
Urging you to “Try this, please!”
Remember what happened to Adam
When he took the advice of Eve.

   ~ Sandy Greco