Two Ekphratic Poems

In January 2015, my friend, the artist Judith Appleton, exhibited her work in a nice gallery in Jerusalem. For the opening, another friend, the poet Orna Silverman, and I read poems based on paintings in the exhibit. Orna writes in Hebrew; I, in English. A short while after the opening, I posted images of the artwork and the two poems I read on my blog. Here they are for BeZine. Images of the paintings are used with permission of the artist.

Greenland by Judith Appleton ©2014 Judith Appleton
Greenland by Judith Appleton
©2014 Judith Appleton


Land of Ice

Hyperborean form—frosted
by pastels, disturbed by shadow
strands—calls unending dusk-dawn
in sacred colors. An indeterminate
matrimony desires fire inside
a wood cabin, order restored
where upheaval emerges
from swells against the sky.
Yet, the stroked shape and
blended palette structure
a syntax of blood, a semantics
of nerves inflaming lonely
twilit-snow, liminal moments
of memory with promises of
maize-tinted nourishment,
hope from the midnight sun.

—Michael Dickel


Dead Sea Cave by Judith Appleton ©2014 Judith Appleton


A Philosophy of Stone

Aleph-tav—alpha-omega—as an inception
of mud swells along architectonic vaults
and girdles a basalt grotto-door that swivels
from a face adumbrated by place. Luster
and umbra texture worlds, lambent reality
perceived as words over matter. Perhaps
here we contrive Plato’s trace, a slight hint
of volcanic certainty steaming out of grasp.

—Michael Dickel

© 2015, poems, Michael Dickel, All rights reserved; illustration by Judith Appleton: a write-up on Ms. Appleton’s showing at the Jerusalem Artists’ House can be read HERE.

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