When we think of summer, we think of sun and long days in the warm weather. And then, there are summer nights. There is something magical and dream-like about a mid-summernight (just ask Shakespeare). Years ago, I was obsessed with an image where the artist changed the background from white to black before publication. This led me to write a whole series of poems on the difference night and day could make. One of these pieces appeared in The Ekphrastic Review here: Collaboration, by Jennifer Met.
Thinking about this has inspired me to create not just one list of summer poems, but two—one for sunny day poems and one for night poems. The following poems featuring summer nights make us question what is seen and what is hidden, as well as the apparent joys of summer.
Litha, by Sheikha A.
As the sun sets on the summer solstice, there is a magical energy where we can see that things are not always what they seem.
Woman by a Pool, by Alan Clark
The author writes about his own painting, exploring what is hidden in silhouette.
Summer Fling, by Sara Eddy
Who can’t help but fall in love with this personification of summer?
Winslow Homer Painting a Summer Night, by Joseph Stanton
A poetic portrait illuminating the painting of a couple dancing in the summer moonlight. How can a painting of night use so much titanium white? How can a direct poem shed even more light?
Dream of a Summer Night, by Marjorie Stelmach
A poem about a painting about the famous Mid-Summer's Night Dream play. Here, the characters with wide eyes are still asleep because how can they reconcile their “oh-so-different flesh?”
Picturesque, But Night, by Mark Danowsky
A summer fair of pure Americana turns sinister with this poem’s closer examination.
Fake Sun, by Anthony DiMatteo
This poem is a mind-reader. The clues are all there in light, dark, and body language, but the poet eloquently puts it all together.
American Loggers, 1939, by Connie Super
This poem perfectly captures the feeling of lingering light at the end of a long summer day of logging deep in the forest.
Under the Purple Sky, I Ask of You, by Courtney Justus
While set in the summer, this atmospheric love poem features wool cardigans, indigo skies, German tattoos, burnt oak, and metal.
Blossoms in the Night (1918) by Paul Klee, by Ericka Ghersi (translated by Toshiya Kamei)
A Spanish poem with English translation that explores every aspect of painting before finally bursting free from its frame.
Jennifer Met lives in a small town in North Idaho. She is a nominee for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net anthology, a finalist for Nimrod's Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry, and winner of the Jovanovich Award. Recent work is published in Cimarron Review, Nimrod, Ninth Letter, Superstition Review, and Zone 3, among other journals. She is the author of the microchapbook That Which Sunlight Chases (Origami Poems Project) and the chapbook Gallery Withheld (Glass Poetry Press). More at www.jennifermet.com.
Call For Throwback Lists
There are six years worth of writing at The Ekphrastic Review. With daily or more posts of poetry, fiction, and prose for most of that history, we have a wealth of talent to show off. We encourage readers to explore our archives by month and year in the sidebar. Click on a random selection and read through our history.
Our new Throwback Thursday features highlight writing from our past, chosen on purpose or chosen randomly. You’ll get the chance to discover past contributors, work you missed, or responses to older ekphrastic challenges.
Would you like to be a guest editor for a Throwback Thursday? Pick 10 favourite or random posts from the archives of The Ekphrastic Review. Use the format you see above: title, name of author, a sentence or two about your choice, and the link.
Include a bio and if you wish, a note to readers about the Review, your relationship to the journal, ekphrastic writing in general, or any other relevant subject. Put THROWBACK THURSDAYS in the subject line and send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Along with your picks, send a vintage photo of yourself too!
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