SPARK http://getsparked.org get together | get creative | get sparked! Tue, 28 Apr 2020 18:33:12 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.4.1 Jonathan Ottke and Kathleen Finn Jordan http://getsparked.org/spark43/jonathan-ottke-and-kathleen-finn-jordan http://getsparked.org/spark43/jonathan-ottke-and-kathleen-finn-jordan#respond Tue, 10 Mar 2020 19:18:02 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17574

Jonathan Ottke

Spring Moondance

Ink on Paper

Response

 

Raining Paint
Kathleen Finn Jordan

Inspiration

It’s raining paint
on this dark February day
As social media splashes me
with photos of sea, dolphins, art and news
Friends on voyages, earth made simple
Warnings percuss the lyric notes of a new poet
Living in new dimension
at fingertips other worlds
and fantasies made real
Just noise or
nubile inspiration
I turn away as
The paints glow palette deep
in the dark corner of the room
They call to me…….
It’s raining paint
on this dark day in February.

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Anya Mayer and Amy Souza http://getsparked.org/spark43/anya-mayer-and-amy-souza http://getsparked.org/spark43/anya-mayer-and-amy-souza#respond Tue, 10 Mar 2020 03:44:43 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17616

Anya Mayer
Response

You’re tough // You can handle it
By Amy Souza
Inspiration piece

Blackberry brambles
are impossible to kill
But the fruit they bear
hangs tender on the vine

You’re tough someone
told me the other day
You always get back up
I don’t want to get back up I said

But they couldn’t hear me scream
When the dog was dying
she tried to hide
behind my nightstand

I shouted no and pulled her out
Does it matter that I held her for
hours before finally calling the vet?
She’d grown quiet in her old age

I hadn’t heard her voice in so long
I would have taken all her pain

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Jennifer Fendya and Jenny Forrester http://getsparked.org/spark43/jennifer-fendya-and-jenny-forrester http://getsparked.org/spark43/jennifer-fendya-and-jenny-forrester#comments Tue, 10 Mar 2020 03:17:50 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17623

Jennifer Fendya
Jenny con mala
Response

Jenny Forrester
Inspiration piece

“Jimmy Si Malo” is at the mic. Gen-X. Claims he’s a millennial. White. CIS man.

He says, “The black man on the ground moans.” He kicks the air, says, “I kick and kick…” I look around the dark bar and Jimmy Si Malo kicks the air again, says, “and kick him.”

I feel sick.

Why, I think, do poet bros do this?

“Jimmy Si Malo” explained himself before he started, “I want to tell the truth. Men like me should be honest about what we’ve done.”

He animates his puppet-self, face-red-rage and a violent power. Brings his foot back. His work-booted foot. Kicks the air. Yells. “I kicked him and kicked him and kicked him.”

Why is he doing this? Can we stop this? Do we have to be polite here?

And he says, “My work boots.”

He’s telling us he’s working class signaling that someone who isn’t working class who tries to silence him will be shamed for stopping him. He’s claiming his working class-ness is what made him a violent racist.

His poem continues. Railroad tracks, night, rain. Smell the ash, the petroleum, the blood. Hear the groans. Hear them stop. But later in his poem, he says he’s not racist anymore. He’s something else that everyone mistakes for a racist hate group but is not a racist hate group.

It’s clear he wants us to believe it’s true that he did horrible, violent things, then transformed, that he feels terrible about it, that he’s brave for speaking it. It’s clear he wants it to be true. I know I’ll write him into something some day.

Another poet gets up and talks about her rape and he’s back in the audience whooping and hollering like he feels it, like he’s for her, like he’s on her side. Whooping. About rape. Her rape.

Later, on social media, he says he’s getting a college degree in fine arts, changes his name back to his given name. He posts on social media, “This bitch, this young white bitch in class…I had to tell her about her white privilege.” He said he yelled, “Fuck you, fuck you, fuck you,” until she cried and left the class. “White women,” he says, “White women and white feminists, fuck you.”

He says, “Fuck you, FUCK you, FUCK YOU!”

 

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Amy Souza and Anya Mayer http://getsparked.org/spark43/amy-souza-and-anya-mayer http://getsparked.org/spark43/amy-souza-and-anya-mayer#respond Tue, 10 Mar 2020 00:26:54 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17610

Anya Mayer
Inspiration Piece

Something Else
By Amy Souza
Response

We used to be something else
Jagged edges tucked together
Beauty in the wear
Lucky attachment

I dreamed of more
But needed to survive

When you folded in half
Gold became bronze
Stretched into two
All display

Arms raised, shoes
Rusted in the fire

Left behind were the
Notches and holes
Cut shapes
Memory frail as a dragonfly

 

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Amy Souza and Lisa Kilhefner http://getsparked.org/spark43/amy-souza-and-lisa-kilhefner http://getsparked.org/spark43/amy-souza-and-lisa-kilhefner#comments Tue, 10 Mar 2020 00:21:11 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17606

Lisa Kilhefner
Inspiration Piece

One Time or Another
By Amy Souza
Response

Feathered energy
Whirlwind of white sky
Listen for what the page wants
And then oblige

What wasn’t there now exists
Lonely anger, yellow twirl
The artist’s hand is never far
Scratching its remembrance

Once a bird flew so close
Fish clamped in its talons
The artist’s heart skipped one beat
Cruel what it takes to live

Strokes on canvas
Hungry teeth know passion
We’re all animals about to strike
At one time or another

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Channie Greenberg and Ash Martins http://getsparked.org/spark43/channie-greenberg-and-ash-martins http://getsparked.org/spark43/channie-greenberg-and-ash-martins#respond Tue, 10 Mar 2020 00:00:54 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17595

Channie Greenberg
Response

Final Call
By Ash Martins
Inspiration piece

“Oh, isn’t it divine?” Beatriz queried, her eyes bright as always, despite the perilous finality before them.

“Why yes, yes it’s still breathtaking…” João trailed off, and sighed with similar wonder.

But of course they didn’t say anything aloud, they merely emitted an energy that, here on Obscuroa, is interpreted as language by the recipient. Not that it mattered anyway because they were the only ones left on the dying, empty planet after 780 years, so no one would’ve heard them.

They faced the ovaline portal together with hands clasped tight, and, gazing deep into the black onyx abyss, jumped.

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Jenny Forrester and Jennifer Fendya http://getsparked.org/spark43/jenny-forrester-and-jennifer-fendya http://getsparked.org/spark43/jenny-forrester-and-jennifer-fendya#respond Mon, 09 Mar 2020 21:23:31 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17627

Jennifer Fendya
“And then…”
Inspiration piece

Jenny Forrester
Response

She had her way with me in ways I didn’t want but agreed to via silence and acceptance.
Acquiescences. Resignations.

You know. You’ve been there, tilted and painted, disguised. But also expressing yourself, attempting to and everyone says you’ve hoarded or taken or appropriated. Depending.

All this water and light and I remember an old boyfriend said he was Italian by way of his grandparents’ migration.

He said, “I’m Italian,” when he was too rough with me. He said, “What’s the Italian version of foreplay?” and he’d snap his fingers, the signal for a woman (at that time, me) to walk over. Fonze-like. “It’s cultural,” he said. I was bound to a silence in observation of the vastness of history.

She said, “People always let me down,” but her crowdfunding got her a trip across the globe, new clothes, new things, new everything. No one lets her down, but she claims that they might so she’s wary because it’s happened before. As if that’s not everyone. As if we haven’t all been let down. As if there are any guarantees.

You know. You have that friend. You know history. You know.

There’s all this redness overtaking the blue. Bruises and break-hewn bone and I’m disappearing into something. I think it’s the way betrayal works on me. It works differently on you. I know because you’re always telling me how you’re NOT LIKE ME. You say, “I’M NOT LIKE YOU,” and you mean it in the worst way, but you think it’s ok to say it because everyone else thinks it’s ok to say that to me, but I don’t hear anyone say it to anyone else. You think it’s ok to say, “YOU’RE SO SENSITIVE,” because you’re mean, not because I’m so sensitive which I am but not the way you think. I’m SO SENSITIVE to pain, SO SENSITIVE to electricity and light pollution.

I stand by the river sometimes watching for trout and I try not to scare them. I want to communicate my softness, my redness and all the shapes in me and bruises and cuts and how I balance myself but mostly I’m orange and painted and trying not to take up space, slanting myself, but also creating art. I want to communicate that I see your softness and redness, the shapes and bruises and cuts and want to help in the balancing. Or support. Or behold in silence. Whatever you need.

I try to take an astronaut’s view of things and frame my bruised and battered feet in gold framed memory keeping devices. I paint and tear and tear and paint and hover-attach my little art self to the bigger overall collage of us.

Bigotry is the construct to tear down is all. And more.

I know that’s controversial.

You know.

 

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Susan B and Kamika Cooper http://getsparked.org/spark43/susan-b-and-kamika-cooper http://getsparked.org/spark43/susan-b-and-kamika-cooper#respond Mon, 09 Mar 2020 20:09:56 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17570

Susan B
“Dreaming”
digital photography
Response

 

You Did
By Kamika Cooper
Inspiration piece

thank you

for all the things you taught me
for all the smiles you brought me
stopping to say hello even though
didn’t feel like speaking at all that day
but you did

for getting those systems back up quickly
for fixing those end dates swiftly
staying up late to meet tight item deadlines
thinking all the time you would never make it
though you always did

thank you

for cadillac benefits in spades and bunches
for all those bagels and surprise lunches
making all of those hard decisions
while executing innovation and vision
yes you did

for entertaining my cache and cookie reminders
for being awesome seekers and fact finders
smiling right through those information lines when
you weren’t always met with smiles in kind
you always certainly did

for all you have done i am infinitely grateful
for all that you are i am forever thankful
for all you will become amid change remain faithful

i wish you every good and beautiful thing

and i always did

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Kamika Cooper and Susan B http://getsparked.org/spark43/kamika-cooper-and-susan-b http://getsparked.org/spark43/kamika-cooper-and-susan-b#respond Mon, 09 Mar 2020 20:09:31 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17565

Susan B
“Portal”
digital photography
Inspiration piece

 

Rendezvous
By Kamika Cooper
Response

i never understood how love could be forbidden
as if what exists between you and me
is anyone else’s business or concern
as if what is felt by you and me could somehow
call others’ views into question or denounce their religion

we have to steal glances from across crowded streets
because if our eyes lock for too long one of us
could be taken away to some unknown place
because if we speak of our longing danger would be waiting
around every single corner as if we are the real danger

that is what would happen if our love for one another was known

so all we have is this space in the hills over our city
the occasional rendezvous to re-profess our love
never knowing if this one will be our last one
the occasional meeting where i find myself peeking through
the window with nerves on edge until you arrive into my arms

why can’t we just stay here?

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Kathleen Finn Jordan and Jonathan Ottke http://getsparked.org/spark43/kathleen-finn-jordan-and-jonathan-ottke http://getsparked.org/spark43/kathleen-finn-jordan-and-jonathan-ottke#respond Mon, 09 Mar 2020 16:49:16 +0000 http://getsparked.org/?p=17557

Sun and Flower

Jonathan Ottke

Inspiration

Earthy Lapis

Kathleen Finn Jordan

Response

The seeds sleep
Closeted in cold, damp soil
Recovering strength sapped by red-hot days
Of summer sun snorting their fragrance, licking their petals
Shrinking and sanctioning their flowery beauty
Pushing them to withered end
They sleep—winter cold, fresh, deep washed
in teeming rains and snows
Until a warming wiggles them free and slowly
Their green slim arms reaching
They begin spring dancing, growing,
smothering their coughing, sneezing
And blowing out renewed flowers, haughty and headstrong
Faces colorful and swaying into summer
The music of their brush toned petals
stroking the air,
bowing in the wind
Gracing the universe.

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