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Musing   by Susan Carlo   ArtPoems 2020
Do we exile ourselves
from the reality of who we are,
never to find our roots again 
beyond the impenetrable replica
of a remembered life?

Fingers of an alabaster being
touch a painted curtain of a nostalgic past,
create an illusion of placidity,
a pleasant picture of a pastoral scene
for the body and the soul.

Torn between the guilt of abandonment 
and the idyllic image of a perceived Eden, 
does the touch engender euphoria
of a former life, hiding the reality
behind the tapestry?

Rapunzel In Space
  Inspiration for Brooke Anderson’s, “Rapunzel In Space”

I gaze from this tower
into night's indigo maze;  
Below it seems a map
of some hidden organ-- 
its veins, an intricate filigree
of fragile canals carrying
crucial nourishment
to a body's inner spaces.
Then those erratic flashes of gold,
the lighter shadows here and there, 
are they the tips and tangles 
of my golden hair?
Above me, in the massive dark, 
are they stars twinkling bright, 
in an endless black nest, 
a billion interchanges 
crisscrossing this random woven universe?
Ah, no to all: 
it is the Dark Matter
hidden from me, 
cradling my arms, my neck,
become my hair, 
and I am nested, caught, connected  
everywhere.  

- Chris Godwin  

Rapunzel in Space   by Brooke Anderson   ArtPoems 2020
Blind Pass   by Shah Hadjebi    ArtPoems 2020
Vignettes of Blind Pass
     Inspired by Shah Hedjebi's "Blind Pass"
Eons Before Us-
Oft forgotten "his- stories"- of fierce Calusa warriors enslaved by foreign interlopers.
English language filled with garroted pronouns-
HE- SHE- THEY- IT- powerfully drawn lines in sand---- between us and them.

Shifting tidal waters… turning the millennia sea glass of Sanibel Island.

Before Us-
Natural fury born upon rising passions of beastly winds- raging havoc-
Axis of crashing- whipping- wailing matter- unrestrained creationism until…
Settling everything into utter silence… filled by cleaved hardscape.
​Shifting tidal waters… turning the millennia sea glass of Sanibel- Captiva Islands.

Us-
Blind Pass cross-cutting lushly landscaped islands... Close by languid waves awash…
lingering sunsets as manatees loll blissfully in pastel shades of dancing sunlight.
Behind rose-colored sunglasses- summertime illusions hide history's cautionary tales.
Shifting tidal waters… turning the millennia sea glass- in our ever-changing world.

~ Holly Rose

The Tracks   by Lawrence Massing   ArtPoems 2020
Mother Nature   by Beth Feige   ArtPoems 2020
Do not be deceived by the bucolic palette.
Look carefully at the brown bodies:
women with curved spines,
men with broken shoulders, 
children with bloated stomachs.

Planting and reaping the largesse of the land
for those who cannot go home again,
for those who do not seek to go,
for those who deny the reality 
beyond the screen.

Time does not retreat.
Does conscience invade our white walls? 
Is it too late to go home again?
Can we do more than reach out
and touch a painted curtain? 

~ Robert Hilliard

YOU CAN'T GO HOME AGAIN
  Inspired by Susan Carlo's “Musing”

Along Bayshore
Sits the Seminole Gulf Railway

On the other side of the tracks
Debt worker is the only option
Hard steel and railroad ties-
Separate the haves and have nots

The Owners quarters-
Are built of grandeur along the shoreline
Those who wage-
Keep warm by the fire at night
With the lowliest of animals

In the day of the scorching Sun 
Tumbleweeds-sway in either direction
It’s Your choice -
Own the Caboose
Or be the One loading cargo
All Aboard
Inspired by Lawrence Massing’s, “The Tracks”
57 limestone rock outlines the rail
To keep the weeds from growing
From Bonita Springs to Arcadia
The former CSX Line keeps on rolling

An evermoving wheel of capital
I sell, you buy
If the conductor quits on the job-
He’s easily replaceable 

Freight is the only thing that matters
Mason Blocks divide boundaries 
Barbed wire fences protect the valuables

In a society where assets are your worth
Be bankrupt or be the Banker
But Beware!
Many have become victims of the runaway train!

- Edwin Moses

Beautiful   
Inspiration for Beth Feige’s, “Mother Nature”

She is the raging inferno,
Burning down everything in her path,
As new seedlings sprout...
Through a rejuvenated forest.

She is the flood of emotion, 
A powerful torrent of wrath,
And- the soothing drizzle,
Lovingly gifting life to all.

She is the gentle breeze,
Caressing faces- carrying hopes in whispering winds,
Capable of ripping trees 
From the ground in a single breath.

She is fire,
She is water,
She is air,
She is nature, and she is beautiful.

- Jaansi Parsa