Who’s Watching Whom?
Someone tried to rub out the moon,
light blurs in self-defense,
forest colours dim to blue-green camouflage.
Broad arms of leaves arch over the proscenium--
elbows of spades, bladed sprays of ferns.
Two creatures, centre-stage, stare.
Furry mute father, owl or bearded man.
Raccoon or gorilla son, X-nose, flashlight eyes,
ears on high alert.
Hyacinth of wisdom stands sentry on the right,
directs the pointed stage lights below
to keep guard, hold fire, maintain calm.
Henri Julien retells this play,
jungle upon jungle—Madagascar,
New Caledonia, Brazil, Peru,
Scenes repeat scenes, forests of mystery—
the hidden scout! Rousseau’s point man
perched on a bent branch,
high over cuckoo-flowers.
A man-bird, small-beaked, shrouded by
ill-fitting trench coat and cape,
Hours pass, sky smudges away,
a lion passes by, tail swinging.
Rousseau recedes in the wings,
a perfect stage manager.
Lee Woodman is the winner of the 2020 William Meredith Prize for Poetry. Her essays and poems have been published in Tiferet Journal, Zócalo Public Square, Grey Sparrow Press, The Ekphrastic Review, vox poetica, The New Guard Review, The Concord Monitor, The Hill Rag, and Naugatuck River Review. A Pushcart nominee, she received an Individual Poetry Fellowship from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities FY 2019 and FY 2020. Her poetry collection, Mindscapes, was published by Poets’ Choice Publishing in January 2020, and Homescapes will be published in May 2020 by Finishing Line Press.
The Ekphrastic Review
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