Iowa Writes

The Poet Stares Too Long at Picasso

Nothing here is what it seems to be:
The birds become hands, long necks, wings
like waves. The canvas becomes a mouth
always open, shrieking of the burning world.
The body is corrugated, shadowed
by an old painting beneath it.
The face is always a test: the eyes multiply
in a splash of violins, chalice, guitar, and bowl of fruit.
The mouth divides endlessly: a pawn,
a tunnel, a house & trees on the hill.
It is all one shape and the one is always
cleaved into the many, the nouns
inhabiting this nameless world, kiss & divorce
in the same breath, dogs, doves, & tiny fires
in the rain. All the icons & symbols turn
into geometry. Here, you can forget
yourself. What is the self, after all,
but a maze, an amazement, an argument,
its many voices rising
from a single blank page.

About Iowa Writes

Since 2006, Iowa Writes has featured the work of Iowa-identified writers (whether they have Iowa roots or live here now) and work published by Iowa journals and publishers on The Daily Palette. Iowa Writes features poetry, fiction, or nonfiction twice a week on the Palette.

In November of 2008, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Iowa City, Iowa, the world's third City of Literature, making the community part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Iowa City has joined Edinburgh, Scotland and Melbourne, Australia as UNESCO Cities of Literature.

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Glenn Freeman has degrees from Vermont College and the University of Florida. His first book, Keeping the Tigers Behind Us, was published in 2007. His second book, Traveling Light, is due out in 2011. He lives with his wife and two cats in Mount Vernon, Iowa where he teaches at Cornell College.

This page was first displayed
on February 11, 2011

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