Poem: Morris Louis, Gamma Epsilon, 1960

Morris Louis, Gamma Epsilon, 1960

When I was a young girl I remember my mother being an artist. She carried a bag filled with drawing pads, pencils, and charcoal. She’d sketch trees and wildlife, sometimes children. It amazed me to watch an image come to life from the pencil in her hand. My love of art started here, much like my love of poetry started with my father. My appetite for reading birthed among the stacks of books that lined the walls of my grandmother’s apartment. It is good to know the origins of your passions. Sometimes you have to peel all the dirty layers back of the things that happened after, to find these gleaming jewels.

Years ago I started writing poems about pieces of art that moved me. I like the idea that I was somehow collaborating with these talented, famous artists. I still write these types of poems and make a point to go to an art museum in every town or city I visit that has one. Art and writing are a person’s invisible emotions made solid. They are captured in forms created from a unique perspective.

My hope with Ekphrastic poetry is inspire you to look at art in a different way. Capture how your body and mind feels when you look at a piece someone poured their soul into. Please enjoy Morris Louis.

Morris Louis
Gamma Epsilon, 1960

My flesh bleeds
your filthy pigments
in jagged runnels
where the knife,
your tongue,
has carved me.

You leave clean
your favorite place,
whole and unblemished—
the place your lips
like to linger, the place
our secrets absorb
through osmosis
when you stay too long.

I bleed you.
I embody you.
I am the near beginning
and the not so end
of you.

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