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Forming Mortals

PrometheusPrometheus depicted in a sculpture by Nicolas-Sébastien Adam 1762

Prometheus by Nicolas-Sébastien Adam, 1762 (Louvre) – Public Domain

here begins her
soliloquy in a minor key
a complex subtext
contortion of the plot

he shouts defense of natural law
impulses of his sexual proclivities
mistaking law for justice
longstanding psycho-logic trick

incestuous gods revenge
apocalypse of politics
the tragic Titan fallout
of an autoerotic tryst


*The title is from Goethe’s Prometheus: ‘Here sit I, forming mortals’

Polaris Ascent

Deer Tattoo

Gryffin stag

Ice maiden descends
Second veil of heaven
Above damp earth
Below ephemeral sky

Land of deer crossing
Threshold of worlds
Mystical sky-horses
Stamp communion

Animal souls devoured
Ink trailed narcotic visions
Nurture strength, she is
Courted by death

At the pinnacle of her
Horsehair mitre, locus
Of regenerative power,
Panther and ram

Preside over quantum paradox
Epicenter of shamanic liberation
Larch kurgan, world tree root
Ecstatic winged snow leopard

Climbs a celestial path
Seductive gracile line
Drawn through the twist
Of antlers and anguish

Image by Kobsev at wikimedia commons, used under a CC-BY-SA 3.0 license

Ak-Alakha River in Siberia, image by Kobsev at wikimedia commons, used under a CC-BY-SA 3.0 license



for Jane Austen

Symphonic assault on propriety
a woman’s wit, most treacherous
deadlier yet if coupled with robust
appetite for passion flashed like an
overwrought Paganini violin concerto

Poverty unraveled ambitions
taught me to be tame, well cared for
I danced Purcell’s Abdelazer Rondeau
Hid all my wildness better than she,
so he sheltered me for a price

Voracious imagination unshackled
no overflow of joy in living
tethered tightly in the mind
freedom in life is terror
remained bound by uncertainty

Poppet performing tricks
cracked porcelain doll
Offenbach’s bird aria
anyone can wind me up
or wear me down

They were in love with an automaton
dissociated darling designed to flirt
disembodied clockwork child
cold to the touch
Unaware I wasn’t real

Playing the trickster – show the world
my feints, its folly, crafting identity to fan
imaginations’ pyre rising unbidden
conflagration, melted with love
Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring riot

Fighting for a voice, rage to master
never abandoning creation
the burning art he inspired
akin to spiritual suicide
Maria Anna Mozart’s lost works

At the tattered end of ashen tears
shards of translucent ceramics
tides of words, melody, and color
elegies of self possession
now I write my own songs

Egyptian Veil

Faluka in the Nile at sunset (Luxor)

Faluka on the Nile (Luxor) (c) AM

From the primordial waters
I created myself
I am everything that is
all that ever was
and what is to come

No one has ever laid open
the garment by which I am concealed
I am the Ancient One
mistress of the bow
red crown ruler of arrows

On the muddied bank
in the land of the lake
I birthed the sun
opening the way
to fertile dynasty

Hellen Frankenthaler Madame Butterfly

Madame Butterfly by Helen Frankenthaler ©2000 Collection National Gallery of Australia


Frankenthaler pours mountains and sea
salt-stain wave of unbridled experimentation
pathfinder in the flow of a quadrillion connections

unfathomable neural networks alight
electrochemical cognate comprehension
of yet unknowable heights

entering elaborative flow, fluid intelligence
a sublime interiority of creativity
color fields of liminal poetics

realms she’s unable to disparage
reaching an optimal state
of courage, merging awareness

with action in rapturous parallel processes
lyric soak stain, abstract expressionist
dialogue of landscape and emotion

art birthed through her inventive interplay
breakthrough paradox: immediacy of motion
mimicking the spontaneity of (her) nature

intimate picture of a singular day
impossibly operatic and poignant
of inked butterfly promises never fulfilled

BluePoppyHimalayasIn the spectral sapphire room
of her memento mori at Gangkhar Puensum
where the timbre weighs somnolent

and no human eyes ever behold her,
Ratridevi intones her nuanced song
a slow tempo fantasia of peace

painting vividly all imagined heavens
with an intensity of crepuscular delight
denaturing seams of star-trail dreamscapes

her semiotic enchantments, fragments of entangled
thought-forms in an unbounded universe beyond language
azure moon-glow midnights of another dimension

enduring wildness unfurls
snow leopard silence reigns
caesura between verses

thunder dragon roars an
ancient tongue of lost symbols
an imploding singularity of meaning

Ratridevi sighs her secret
descends from mountain peak to
soul-vale, bathed in violet light

Posted for Lynn’s excellent Poetics prompt at dVerse: Summit in Sight. This poem is a continuation of a poem I wrote in 2012: Lexical Shangri-La: Here be Dragons.




By Martin St-Amant [CC BY-SA 3.0 (

enraptured by the sea
we are entwining
glacial motion turn to
bellwether song

fractured whale bone
whistle frost pining
my cry echoes through
blue blind caves

phase shift thunder cracks
ruptures liminal border
escaping meltwater
liberates me

you must remain
icily taciturn,
resolutely still

Intermittent Streams

Anna Montgomery

walking along a ravine
of sun-caked mud
crisp-cutting sounds
grasshopper wing song
of independence

shade like shadow
has its own atmospheric
melancholy and joy
symphony in the air
whispering spirituals

under a willow cloak
shape-shifting shaman
fluidity of your presence
water in an arid land
free flowing wild

climbing the
hollowed trail
canyon walls kissed
with wind symbols
images of liberation

shade like shadow
incants secrets
paints landscape
swaths of transformation
intermittent streams

Arches by Anna

Lines in italics by Anthony Desmond from dVerse poetry prompt.
This poem is written to congratulate him on his book deal!

Anna Montgomery

refracted photographic imprints
mirrored images, effigies
of a soft, fragrant
long forgotten

gracile clouds
dissipating into
pregnant air
earth absorbs
emotion and

marred with
anti-compositional devices
ruin punctuated by lilacs

spherical imaginarium
a cultural artifact
cracked by tremors
calibrating pain
at precise frequencies
mensurating oppression

data recorded on
an unending spool
quantum computing
oscillator made of
wolf bone

appropriated symbols
assimilated by the
AI processor
to ensure
it can’t be


yet each embodied
one is attuned
to history
to the iron-salt
smell of blood

Detail from Denatured Structure by Anna Montgomery

pink magnolia
petals cascade
within the space
between the cast-
iron bed frame
and moments of passion,
my semiotic erotica

existing in the same
space as I read an
American Hybrid
Anthology – Super
Target parking lot
transmissions capture
antipoetic phrasing

immersed in disruption
of a linear, temporal path
illogicality seems actionable,
implicitly possible,
delicious even

fragments rupture an
empirical process
while immanence
in Google searches
missives in ether
petitions to digital
gods, binary masters

memory terraforms
another exoplanet
spiral galaxy
mimetic minds
world building
half comprehensions
poems unraveling
in space-time

microcosmic bees
swarming my hive
incinerate the wasp
translucent frogs croak
a requiem . . . codification
stitches these seams

here in the room
where myths are born
Hypatia calculates an
elegant proof while
Sappho presages
a papal decree

all poetry is reduced
to ash, each word burns
away its discovery
this line will soon
alight upon a zephyr
carried to the sea

all is transformation
in a universe of energy
conservation, an unending
causal chain unfolding
from the first shift force
directing matter as
particles coalesced

within an atmosphere
of censure I carved an
ivory key, securing
esoteric runes –
legacy of what
was once lost