blade through to sanity

diebenkorn 46

blade through…
expose then from now
tenuous to present
where clear bright lines
for certainty stretch to
demark a slipping limit

pin the moment to
a briefest sense of place
holistic in a glance
at spaciousness

intuit grounding to
the binding trance
of sanity beneath
the transitory knowing
of a second’s edge

Bonnie Marshall

Artwork by Richard Diebenkorn
“Ocean Park, Number 46”


seance in a gallery

mirror art pistoletto

at the gallery with
standers…standing me
apart…as it should be
me… and the whoever
there pendant in the rooms

I search for connection
to be with that distant one
who’s thinking me the ropes…
some grasp of their experience…
though tenuous at best and
not meant to be a séance

except when I’m in the moment
and…I stroll and stop and stroll
and stop, and gaze and gaze and
read title cards…

“Tropic Table Afternoon”
still life…papaya…guava…mango
coconut’s monkey eyes looking
back at me

“Henry James’ Dinner Tales of Asparagus”
abstract…white…silver…faded green
ice tink to cut crystal in a distant room

“Cold Cereal at Midnight”
impressionist…bare light bulb
open window…barren kitchen
November raining in my mind

all flat painted canvas on flat painted wall
and I turn outside from in…restless
for store front windows on busy streets,
unless it’s Banksy…then all bets are off
keep away the rain…take pictures for a book
on a coffee table

Bonnie Marshall

Artwork by Michelangelo Pistoletto

to apprehend the tip

death dali

if I close my eyes…
there–then is a shadow realm
on my emergent vision screen
where dim discrepancies of blind
fall to the floor of my consciousness;
and I pause to orient my fingers’ touch
and mouth taste…edge of salt…
and to belly breathe this airiness of life

for I discern emergent
in these veil-ed moments
deeps and shadows…
edges… angles… planes
faintly…faintly there…mere
vagaries of  imaginings,
for I bring with me to this instant
brief apprehension of a vaguely
conscious ending…and…
a tipping place to dark

Bonnie Marshall

Artwork by Salvador Dali

small act of mercy


what the hell she do that for
her goldfish on the desk
gasped for life…still water glistening
its gill slits opened… closed
to sip burning oxygen

my fish…just felt like doing it
experiment…a testing of their nerve
perhaps they’d let it die this year
not buck authority…and teach is boss
her property…and she’s a crazy woman
to dip her hand into the bowl
to kill in front of them

hey….do something
some dying in its eye
a slowing will to breathe
no thrashing in its tail
no cavalry in sight

oh, Christ…I’ll do it
he splashed it to the bowl
it floated on its side

it’s dead…
then awareness righting
and orienting thrust to
claim its element

it’s yours now…
her implication dawned
some cheered…some jeered
his rash accomplishment…
she left it to them to think
the sense or nonsense of it
and…she never lost a fish

Bonnie Marshall

Note to dear Readers…this is a true story.


Artwork by Color Jar