A Selection from Whirled


      --painting by burning in

I am not a stoneware vase
to be set at a certain angle
(silent currents intuit these things).
I move, breathe, think & feel
despite a tingling tripping the spine
static in the brain, pain pressing
the curved backsides of eyeballs
no aspirin can soothe
no combination of notes
no hand on drumskins can assuage.
now, laughter might erase
or deep sleep shake loose.
o queer twist-on-a-stick,
to want only an effigy! a shape
to touch bend fill then break.
to hold at a distance
to light & leave.

but I am none of these.
no ceremonial object, I come.
I am the ceremony, the weather.
& weather surprises, rearranges,
sweeps through, invigorates
& yes, clears the way,
provides the killing frost.
framed & matted, I am the print
lifting myself from the paper,
the woman-in-oils
stepping from the gallery wall
twisting up her hair
escaping between door & lintel
(hints of summer in the air),
the marble figure flying
minus drape or extremities.
no more pedestals! no track lighting!

to fix beeswax, paint & dye
requires heat in the end.
& if thoughts do precede words
they then become lovers, they listen,
they learn to speak with each other.
& if they do run in our veins,
climbing upstream, fish fins & sorrow,
surely they will find a way to you.

        --Marion Kimes