Saturday, July 14, 2018

Chani Zwibel in the Summer of 2018

Tonight I'd like to post some beautiful and fierce poems by Chani Zwibel (thank you for your patience, Chani!).  These are wonderful poems for a summer evening.

There is a room inside my soul with an altar to water and the fountain flows day and night, making that room chilled and damp like an underground cavern, cool like a springhouse where salamanders play, and clumps of moss grow. 
Priestesses garbed in orange tend the altar and let nothing obstruct the water’s path.
The water room plays nothing but Jimi Hendrix “1983 A Merman I Should Turn to Be”, and I can swim through the room in a black bikini, lithe like a seal.  
I am riding a blue roan in the water altar, gauzy garbs of seafoam draped over my mermaid tail, dangling entangled bits of kelp, water lilies in my long, unbound hair.  
I am the tiger queen here, stealing softly behind the grasses, protecting the boundaries of my silvery pool.
The tiger queen stalks prey to consume to fuel her power. Foes fear her, and do not dare trespass.
The room in my soul holds the water, holds it like a palace of coral beneath the azure waves. It is nestled in the depths, secret grotto in oceans vast. It golds the tangerine glistening of a sun sinking into the horizon’s briny embrace. 
Often the tiger queen visits fountain and pool, and licks the fur of her kittens with rough tongue. She whispers the secrets of ruling empires to them. 
Her smile is full of fangs wet with the nourishment of secure supplies of water and blood.

Heart as casket- 
wooden, hollow, red-velvet lined, 
not a coffin but a strong box,
 capable of keeping treasures,
 memories of coldest winter mornings 
where frost is on windows, 
nature’s cold lace 
and steam of hot breath
 is a ghost in air.
 Grey roads wind around, 
wind around again 
in dark hollows 
with skeleton woods
 where deer search
 for roots of grasses 
buried deep in snow. 
 Heater is on 
and we are children are in bed.
 Creek flows black under moonlight, 
slender boughs of willow 
tickling its slick surface. 
 Scents of Christmas, 
 wood-smoke and pine, 
and plastic of new toys.

Copyright 2016 by Autumn Zwibel 

DREAMS IN A WORLD OF FIRE (Previously published in The
 Blue Mountain Review Issue 6 Feb 17, 2017)
On the other side of time is a city made of fire. 
You can get there through a red door.
 On the top floor of the house made of fire
 is a canvas on a yellow easel, 
where a painter is painting a green field, 
for in a world of fire, 
they dream of verdant pastures.
 Outside, a red sun is rising 
into the empty waiting arms of a red tree.
 An old woman with a pair of blue wings on her back
 is reading a book about whales, 
for in a world of fire,
 they dream of azure oceans. 
Next to the door is a golden angel 
with a fishhook in its talons.
 Water may be a dream, 
but it guards against any beastie
 that might rise from the depths.  
Upstairs, past the artist’s studio,
 is a room with a red balcony 
where nobody goes, 
and only blue shadows bake upon the burning walls,
for in a world of fire, 
they dream of cobalt dusks.  

Chani's last poem reminds me of the third panel of Bosch's The Garden of Earthly Delights, so I'm posting it here.  On the other hand, her world of fire is not hell.  It's probably more like Mercury's surface in Kim Stanley Robinson's novel 2312.

Herbie Hancock's "Mutants on the Beach" fits well with the world of fire:

Here is a live version of his "Actual Proof" from 2006:

I'll finish with Yissy Garcia and Bandacha's version of "Tutu":

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