Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Free Verse: An Artist's Rendering of a Canvas

An Artist's Rendering of a Canvas

Thoughtful, he paused mid stroke to exclaim
to dip his bristled brush to match his bristle mustache
in thick, green goo.
He wet the tip of his brush with his tongue,
an afterthought,
to remember paint thinners that poisoned his parents.
He paused, remembering crowded streets
stuffy with sweat and amber blood,
and dirt roads crying the only way they could—
with dust—deeply cleft into lungs.
The call of wild hounds is something he could not ignore,
despite the churning in his head.
He remembered darkness that lasted for days,
curled in the corner of a basement,
trying not to breath.
He watched the canvas,
untrusting of its cheerful, silent listening.
He had always painted only what he knew,
but since he did not know anything anymore,
he only managed to reproduce his tools.

Justine Bienkowski

Free Verse: Storms


We shake our bellies out
In the face of angered skies
Pounding fists on the ground
And into our mouths.
We taste sweet, sharp gravel,
Piercing the supple bulbs on our tongues
And yell nonsense into the wind.
My knees are scraped from scrapping up thick branches,
Dragging my fingernails behind me
To better understand the texture.
Your nose is dripping red
From fights with deep puddles
And rolled-up pant legs.
We shoot off rockets into the open air,
Mocking its rage.
Our breath is hot when we touch.

The words feel hot in my mouth,
In your clenched teeth,
In the stale air of the air,
Rolling around as avalanche after avalanche buries our calm.
I keep myself still,
Away from possible flint, away from storms,
Afraid to spark the white fire in your heart.
We rumble along, gaining speed.
Finally, I grab your hand among the flashing lights,
Smile at you, make sure you know it will be alright.
The flecks in your eyes will keep me here.

Justine Bienkowski