Ars Longa, Vita Brevis

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The seastacks stand tall above the tides
like Hellenic pillars sculpted each day
while a small seashell, dragged ashore, collides
with my bare foot as I walk upon the bay.

The seastacks have been proven through eons past
to endure Time’s erosive ebb and flow,
whereas the seashell shall never outlast
the night, broken with the sea’s careless catch-and-throw.

Yet, while I stand in the shadows of Time’s temple
I admire the quaintness of such short-lived creatures,
the shell at my toes being a thing seemingly simple,
yet taking eons to craft with such finite features.

The Sandman

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Proud as the stars in a predestined sky,
silent as waves in a vast ocean’s lull,
his gaze as black as the crammed backmost shadow
crowding the rear of a dreaming man’s skull,
yet starbursts of nebulas glimmer and glow
unfolding entire cosmos within a twinkling eye.
Within his dark robes flames dance in mystery
and within his mind our minds all commune,
the Dreamland palaces of his creation all abounding
as a kaleidoscope from the Dreamstone rune
to both ground us and make us lose our grounding,
reminding us what is real, what isn’t, and what yet can be.

Morpheus, the Sandman, Byronic lord of mist and dream,
moody, gloomy, sullen, and grim—
grimmer, even than Death, his sister and kin
who is so blithe towards him, no matter his whim,
his heart as fickle, at times, as his name and skin,
weaving together wonders, and horrors, neuron to seam.

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Andrew Wyeth’s Painting “Christina’s World”

Christina's World

Prisoner of my own flesh,
numbed legs like petulant children
dragging along behind, limp with
defiance,
even as the hot sun burns the feathery field
into the dirty tallow of candlewax
and egg tempera.
The smoky gray house leans away from me
atop that lofty hill, also slanted
as if to turn its indifferent shoulder to me, fading
into the phantasmally white sky;
fading away
like unreal mirages in a grassy desert
while spiteful stalks scrape my pale, atrophied
body, my hands pulling my world along,
one palm tightly
hoofed
to dig into the turf
and the other spreading skeletal fingers
to clutch at the broad, unfeeling breast
of my world.
My world—
my world is, for you, but a
momentary glimpse,
an uncomfortable glance just before you
turn away,
walk away,
forget,
moving freely toward the horizon
as it rolls easily toward you.
For me the horizon
looms larger, more daunting with
every day,
every hour, every
floundering moment spent
crawling, dragging, clutching
at the heartless breast of the earth, my own body
betraying me like a
drowned corpse who
refuses to release me from its
clinging death-grip.
My world will not move for me.
Though the earth is
scarred with the passage of vehicles, I move,
crippled and unaided,
by the dynamo of my
heart, my hands, my unflagging
will.
I am
a mermaid
out of water
hauled cruelly ashore
and dropped onto the hot prairie,
lax legs limp beneath me, as unfeeling
as the earth beneath me;
as unfeeling as the world I call my own.
And yet,
though my world does not stir for me
my determination
stirs the world.