Poetry Page

This is where I will upload my poems, responses, and artworks related to Poetry for the Artists Among Poets Class by Dr. Alison Watkins.

Final: Stumped


eyes list lazily to the left 
leaden curtains invade the space of my pupil
obscuring the visual thought at hand
revitalize! resuscitate! stimulate!



Untitled by Scott Prather

tied around my finger never to forget the lasting effect of your presence,
the blood stays in my throbbing digit
it doesn't get the chance to join the rest of the blood cells circulating in my body
or deliver oxygen to my lungs and rush into my heart, no
it stays in my finger,
reminding me how much it hurts to touch 


The Devoted by Scott Prather

shadow attached to the sole of her heel
only to let go when foot takes flight
in spotlight or in room alone
but always there to keep her grounded


A.M. by Scott Prather

wake up to hear birds crash into one-way mirrors
attacking repeatedly its reflections  
land-locked among sheets I fight morning
with its hunger, fatigue

Irritant by Scott Prather

voice like sawed off shotguns shell
does pierce skinned vibration
the breath escapes

Saturated by Scott Prather

on metaphorical walls, greens screens,
graphic t-shirts, arms that are inked
these words and images hit
calloused heart strings


Passages by Scott Prather

 tick, tick, tick, tick,
then it tocks the way around again
  sour as hours pass
     from the peripherals of my hindsight.  


Lost in Thought by Scott Prather
lost in thought is just a train
barreling towards oblivion
darkness overwhelmed with possibilities
pinhole of vision realized dropped from an after-thought ripen the mind magnified out of unconsciousness track to guide the inborn insight flickering above  just out of reach searching for foundation ________________________________________________________________________

The Whale in the Blue Washing Machine -- John Haines
 There are depths even in a household
 where a whale can live. . . .
 His warm bulk swims from room
 to room, floating by on the stairway,
 searching the drafts, the cold
 currents of water and liberation
 He comes to the surface hungry,
 sniffs at the table,
 and sinks, his wake rocking the chairs.
 His pulsebeat sounds at night
 when the washer spins and the dryer
 clanks on stray buttons. . . .
 Alone in the kitchen darkness,
 looking through steamy windows
 at the streets draining away in fog;
 watching and listening
 for the wail of an unchained buoy,
 the steep fall of his wave.

Mixed Media


In a Dark Time by Theodore Roethke

In a dark time, the eye begins to see,
I meet my shadow in the deepening shade;
I hear my echo in the echoing wood--
A lord of nature weeping to a tree.
I live between the heron and the wren,
Beasts of the hill and serpents of the den.
What's madness but nobility of soul
At odds with circumstance? The day's on fire!
I know the purity of pure despair,
My shadow pinned against a sweating wall,
That place among the rocks--is it a cave,
Or winding path? The edge is what I have.
A steady stream of correspondences!
A night flowing with birds, a ragged moon,
And in broad day the midnight come again!
A man goes far to find out what he is--
Death of the self in a long, tearless night,
All natural shapes blazing unnatural light.
Dark, dark my light, and darker my desire.
My soul, like some heat-maddened summer fly,
Keeps buzzing at the sill. Which I is _I_?
A fallen man, I climb out of my fear.
The mind enters itself, and God the mind,
And one is One, free in the tearing wind.

Ink and Digital


An Ode to Candles by Scott Prather

In satin veiled darkness
3 candles spark to life
Flames glow like the tiger's eye
Light keeping steady 
Dancing to an unheard beat
The wax released from cold captivity
By tepid golden light
A delicate whisper decides their fate
One breath can take it all away

Ink and Digital


Reading Responses for Artists Among Poets
What do Women Want?:  This is a poem that is obviously written by a woman.  She wants the world in the form a of a red dress, the answer to all of her desires.  I find it interesting as the poem seems to be a response to a bad relationship.  She wants the dress to be torn off of her yet she wants the red dress ‘to show how little I care about you.’  I think the image paired with the poem shows the physical red dress more than the mental state of the speaker of the poem.

The Street:  It is interesting how the imagination can fill in the unanswered questions the eyes ask the brain. We can read in between the lines and see something for more than what it really is.  So is the case of Stephen Bobyns’ poem, The Street.  He took the visual narrative produced in the painting and created a world of vignettes based off the characters, I think adding to the story of the painting.  Dobyns then relates the vignettes to each other by saying they are all exactly identical and exactly similar in their steps of their own lives.  We all lead our own way but each human being experiences the same trials and tribulations the world gives us.

The Jungle:  For one, I think the matchup of image and poem do not correlate.  I base this judgment on feeling alone, the painting is not giving off the same mood as the poem.  The poem
is a statement to one’s creativity, the sameness one can produced if there is no depth in the ‘jungle.’  The jungle could also metaphorically strangle the ‘breath, or search or care,’ taking away the will to go forward only leaving the ‘tree trunk.’

The Cuban Doctor:  A stray from a narrative point of view, this poem allows for some fantastic imagery as indicated in the image.  This is a poem in which one needs to read in the context of its creation, understanding the environment the author had written the poem.   Of course the enigmatic way of writing adds to the nuance of the poem, especially the random title of ‘The Cuban Doctor.” Not one of my favorites as something more linear and apparent better fits my likes.

Naked Girl and Mirror:  It seems to me that the general theme for this poem would have to be self-esteem.  In our culture for centuries, women have been apt to look at themselves in a negative light/.  The author starts off by saying that she had no body, in reference to that she had no thought about her body at a young age.  She looks at herself with a longing thought.  I want to say that the voice of the poem is her elf-esteem, talking to the girl in the mirror.  I say that in because if the last line(s) is “your lovers shall learn better...if their arrogance dares to think I am part of you.’  In tis light, we can say the poem has a positive disposition, saying that her negative attitude toward her body is something men wont care about.

A Hand:  This is a very interesting way for a list poem to be written, attaching physical and metaphorical contexts to what a hand is not.  The poem is a little too open-ended for my tastes as I think the message gets lost because a hand becomes an unanswered question.

Edward Hopper and the House by the Railroad:  Thus far, my favorite of the poems because Hirsch investigates the painting and the painter with incredible clarity to me.  He sees the painting from the mindset of a literal, visual person and articulates the brooding mood the building takes on.  One would be able to see the painting in mind's eye just from the poem.  The poem describes the atmosphere that reflects the artist and cold conjecture that as the building stares at us from the painting, we as the audience are obliged to stare back. Such is the nature of painting, to view it. 

Nude Descending a Staircase:  Since being in class, the notion of rhyming poems has become less and less appealing, which happens to be the case with this poem.  For the art movement of futurism, the imagery of the poem holds too much of a narrative.  It doesn't allow one to intepret the lines just as we can interpret the lines in the painting.  The energy is lacking, likely from the even stanzas and rhyming couplets.  The call to attention the author pays to the audience spying breaks the fourth wall of an otherwise narrative piece and I think hinders the poem as well. 

Love Song:  These two poems are subtle but cause me to think of the relations between the different couplets.  I feel as if poet is interested in love but is not interested in the cheapness it can be at times.  The poet is not interested in the showmanship of love, but the day-to-day reality of it.  Creating something brilliant out of what can be viewed as the mundane.

Disillusionment of Ten o'Clock:  Its interesting to see this poem with the animation as I don't think the literal depiction of the poem captivates the audience any better.  But when reading the poem, the imagery created in mind's eye is much more compelling.  The way the poem ends reminds me of a dream episode of any sitcom in which the whole story turned out to be a dream. Its as if the sailor is dreaming and we are watching them and him as the audience.

The Parable of the Blind:  This is a simple description of the painting which in itself is fantastic.  To be honest, one of less dramatic poems as it only offers an exposition of the painting and nothing more.

Skeleton Pirate with Ghost Ship: One of my other favorites thus far in that it has a good storytelling aspect to it.  The poet tells the whole poem within the first two lines, something one can refer back to after reading it inits entirety.  One can read any current social commentary into this poem, its able to fit in many different contexts.