Thursday, April 30, 2009

Joe Rosenblatt: 10 poems, 3 graphics

This Forest
Immured inside a gauzy dream.
I slept upon a gossamer of blood.
finding solace in the stillness there.

These woods have pensive eyes
for the sunny pilgrim on a nature trail
idly spinning an arboreal meditation.

Within my web I heard a cry
yet it wasn’t me who bled.
but the Maker of that bed.

The Boat

This is not just some passing fishing boat
Forget the chrome, those screaming colours
Powered by a weighty testicular engine,
this craft bubbling with smoky testosterone,

I want to take this machine out for a joy ride.
They’ll be three of us onboard: myself, my soul, and a bottle of rum:
I’ll carry no lethal fishing rod or line
to jig for salmon, rockfish, lingcod, or flatfish
their teensy harlequin’s mouth whispering
vacuuming a prayer for grub, stirring up sand and sediment.
I’m not an angler, just a thoughtful pilgrim


I am a meandering body of spirited water
Carrying minnows of fleeting thought
Stranger, your artificial flies have no sex appeal.

For what I perceive are emaciated wings
and laughable torsos shamelessly floating;
Select a few meaty voluptuaries dressed in gold
From your wicker basket, cast them out to me!

Starved for iridescence seasoned by a piquant musk
A larvae- fed soul cries: ‘See, there’s my appetite caught on a riffle;
Fetch it quickly lest it be mistaken for a waltzing stonefly
and vaporized by some mottled nibbling phantom.’

Striding in leaden hip waders, evening fast approaches
Wearing the sky for a hat bedazzled with baubles.
He’s there to encircle us all in a wide invisible net
Not his guests, we’re that meal served on a misty table

Kirkby’s Sky

Hello, infinite robin-blue cloudless personality.
The face is pristinely familiar, have we met before?
Mister Sky, you’re a lake concealing troutly eyes:
They’ll be no gurgling outboard engine to spook
those iridescent fish I want to catch and release.

I fancy a snuggly boat with oars for me and my soul.
I want to drift around awhile and maybe cast
some sunny dry overdressed artificial fly
with transparent angelic wings: it’ll stay afloat.
Hey, I see a riffle: I’ll cast in that direction

to entice some passing nibbly speckled phantom.
I think I’ll tie my tired soul to that floating leader.
And try a double loop of a cast out to God.
Or maybe I’ll wait awhile and just keep drifting?
You Cast a Fearful Shadow

Ken, the salmon fold their fins in prayer.
You cast a fearful shadow on the water.
Do they hear the whirl of an angry reel
while nibbling out your name in code?

All that glitters is not food for fish.
The net of eternity catches them and us.
But what Fisher then is steering our boat
through the sexy nebulae and wafting mist?

In the bigger picture we’re all swimmers
gyrating above a sunless ballroom floor
squirming and turning in a flammable waltz
Never accept a gift from a passing stranger

above the waterline. Pity the dazzling catch
kissed by famished hooks, barbed and pointy!

Nature Naturing

Leering in heat and tangled in foliage
She has set up a canvas on an easel.
Nature Naturing views Ken as a tree,
wild and leafy with viridescent libido.
Nature can think, but can she paint?

Attired in bark, he feels suddenly vulnerable.
“Who’s the damned painter here,” he screams
“Paint me thin, not fat! go organic, use
Your natural turpentine: now thin me out;
look, there’s a lot of wall space to work from
and another thing: I want more leafage and shadow!”

Ken finds its comforting to know
Adjoining trees shield him with their branches
providing brambles of muted anonymity.
He’s not alone, but can he handle that compression?
Wielding a brush, a Mother’s love can be asphyxiating!


Affixed on an artist completing a sketch
a steely emperor on the highest branch stirs

as from a partially-eaten dream, to fit
a curious repast inside a basaltic gaze.

Talons ready, he’ll swoop down, seize
what he’s mistaken for scrumptious quarry

And like some warrior god , he’ll swiftly jet
skyward to a nest filled with fragmentary bones;

Yet Ken keeps on sketching that statuary bird
who sketches him in the carborundum silence.

Hello, Mister Lonely

Immured in minutiae of exacting brushwork on canvas
the mottled rocks on the beach seem funereally silent
having endured the ennui that comes with galactic muteness.
“I want to put all of you in the bigger post-volcanic picture.”
Ken wants to include an adjoining pebbly multitude born of the Blast.
“Hello, Mister Lonely,” whisper their sub visible metamorphic mouths.
“Back again are you, to capture our parched dry symmetry?”
Ken ignores his subjects, best to let a sleeping stone lie . . .
“Say, can you bring the lake over to us—we haven’t had a drop in ages.
“There’s too many of you ---I’ll bring the lake over to you in my painting.
Now don’t move, I want to capture the sunlight spilling on you.”

Silence is an Animal

Ken is familiar with the silence which stares back at him
on the canvas, the oblong shadow moving in the water
at mid afternoon, the eagle resting in the tree silently
contemplating a plat d’ jour, what is available, what stirs
noiselessly in a shrub, and then Ken, metaphysically edible
if he can swooped up by a thunderous god to his nest.
I’m reminded of a pterodactyl, and how the Mighty have fallen.
The silence is a tense animal speaking to speechless Ken
honoured to be observed by that lovely feathered Messenger
who is a carnivorous painter in his own unforgiving kingdom
painting in blood on his boundless canvas of sky and earth.
You are being keenly painted in minutiae, don’t look back.
He can smell droplets of fear --- you are on canvas--- in the air.


Out for a thrill, wanting to romp with sunlight
a poodle -cumulus is off its leash in the sky
adrift above a mountain lake, so placidly still
as to appear asleep in some darkened cradle
where tranquility arises as disembodied mist.

Congealing spirits wander over to a solitary figure
on shore, visiting a tableau vivant forming on canvas.
Is that painter aware of an immeasurable loneliness
in a cloud famished for a dab of sunflower-yellow?

You put the stillness on a leash to meet other ghosts
who peregrinate with other drifters inside a painting
Solitude is a friend you take out for a casual stroll.

The Bird in the Stillness is Waiting

The bird in the Stillness is waiting.
Talons honed to make the kill
and fly on a jet stream toward Oblivion
where there’s no streaming light
except for the shining in a bird’s terrible eyes.

Have you come for me, downy messenger?
This must be a dream that I’m staring in
where a bird in the stillness is waiting.

Feathers bristling, a song from hell
shrilling from its vibrant beak . . .

Yet I’m not ready to fly with you.


  1. Enjoyable yes. One slight p.s. May I be so bold? Was that staring or starring?
    Thank you.

  2. Joe says staring. Cheers jr aka Schroedinger's Cat.