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Wednesday, February 22, 2012


by Rochelle Owens 


                                        for Stavros Deligiorgis

Never having seen a wave
frozen in mid-air the glassblower

manifold images in his brain
the rays of the sun

amorphous the forms boiling forming
a floating toothed leaved plant

floating Acanthus
a Black Hole a crucible a bubble glowing

one millionth one millionth of a second
an episode

a ferocious s c a t t e r I n g
white ovals glassy crystals orbiting
never having seen a wave
 frozen in mid-air the glassblower

turning spinning blowing hail-stones
shaping winds oceans storms

storms eddying
layers of ice cracking piling lifting

molten glass swelling lifting arching
never having seen a wave

frozen in mid-air the glassblower
dipping into the furnace

around and around rolling and shaping
around and around

a gob of molten glass
melting shards spiraling flaring
glittering hot glass
amorphous dazzling light frozen

in the glassblower’s brain
hot glass spiraling around and around

amorphous the glass
never having seen a wave frozen in mid-air

cooling scattering flowing
s u s p e n d e d

molten the ice the winds circling
a billion suns

the breath of the glassblower
the brain of the glassblower

moisture and nutrients flowing
the glassblower’s skull
the skull the color of snow
ferocious the heat pouring melting

melting and freezing the seas
spiraling arms

out of the crucible the glassblower
gathering gathering

never having seen a wave frozen in mid-air
rolling lifting arching

the layers of glass surging surging

Rochelle Owens is the author of twenty books of poetry, plays, and fiction, the most recent of which are Solitary Workwoman(Junction Press, 2011), Journey to Purity (Texture Press, 2009), and Plays by Rochelle Owens (Broadway Play Publishing, 2000). A pioneer in the experimental off-Broadway theatre movement and an internationally known innovative poet, she has received Village Voice Obie awards and honors from the New York Drama Critics Circle. Her plays have been presented worldwide and in festivals in Edinburgh, Avignon, Paris, and Berlin. Her play Futz, which is considered a classic of the American avant-garde theatre, was produced by Ellen Stewart at LaMama, directed by Tom O’Horgan and performed by the LaMama Troupe in 1967, and was made into a film in 1969. A French language production of Three Front was produced by France-Culture and broadcast on Radio France. She has been a participant in the Festival Franco-Anglais de Poésie, and has translated Liliane Atlan’s novel Les passants, The Passersby (Henry Holt, 1989). She has held fellowships from the NEA, Guggenheim, Rockefeller, and numerous other foundations. She has taught at the University of California, San Diego and the University of Oklahoma and held residencies at Brown and Southwestern Louisiana State. This is Rochelle Owens' twenty-sixth New Verse News poem.