Monday 5 August 2013

3 Poems by Neil Ellman

El Péndulo Immóvil I 
(after the painting by Antoni Tàpies)

When the pendulum stops
suspended in gravity
no longer keeping time
between heaven and earth
systolic and diastolic
oscillations of the blood
as if rivers stand still
oceans freeze
heart flutters, pauses
for a moment
where it began
where the pendulum
plumb-fixed on a string
life ceases to be.

(after the painting by Paul Klee)

The red eye watches
intent on means
justified by ends
in fire
burning in the dark
leering, luring
to possess
another’s soul
it sees inside
knows its character
as if it were itself.

Abyss Pool
(after the painting  by Don Suggs)

Madness has a shape
sometimes round
a winter melon
fallen from the vine

a square
having four arguments
against the singular truth
of equidistant lines

the hexagon’s
too many avatars
and angles
in a world of certainty

and then an oval
cracking open
in a third dimension
as an egg

The shape of madness
is a disk
within a disk
within a disk.


Twice nominated for Best of the Net, as well as for the Rhysling Award from the Science Fiction Poetry Association, Neil Ellman lives and writes in New Jersey.  More than 750 of his poems, many of which are ekphrastic and written in response to works of modern art, appear in print and online journals, anthologies and chapbooks throughout the world.  Many of these previously published poems appear in Parallels, this first full-length collection.

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