Sheltered in Place
BY RICHARD LEVINE
You watch your boy struggle with giving
up the turtle, returning it to the pond
where he’d found it on a walk—
first time you’d all been out in days.
How thoughtful he thought he’d been,
making it a home in the home
where the family sheltered in place.
How he cared for his armored friend.
Having picked flowers, knowing they’d die,
you understand the urge to pluck
the exotic, the beautiful—any diversion
from fear, which is in itself a disease.
That morning, you helped your boy
give up the idea of living forever.
6:22 a.m. By Gerard Malanga
I’ve gone beyond the expectant time of dreaming and now no dreams. There are no first names, even. No greetings on the street. No emails. What I’ve done the day before. My memories like a sieve through which nothing
I can get a grasp on happens. The words well placed, those that have survived. And then what to do with them?
Stretching out those sentences for as far as they would go, across those yellow sheets of paper, the lines well placed. Or else nothing happens. I’m suddenly in a lurch to rise up outta bed or drift back to sleep for another search without seeing in the dark. Without knowing what to ask.
The giver (for Berdis)
The poem I chose was “The Rose that Grew from Concrete” by Tupac. I liked how simple it was. My interpretation was that even in a cruel world or environment, something beautiful can blossom. I tried to set the mood to be gloomy because the poem talks about injustice and unfairness that is present in society and being able to evolve into something amazing. The rose is growing out of concrete just like the poem says. The sky is made with gouche paint, the colors being purple, orange and a greyscale. I then took the painting into photoshop and added the lightening and the rose. I made the rose be the brightest component to emphasize how it “grew” and “learned to breathe fresh air”. The environment is meant to be lonely because at the end of the poem he says ” Long live the rose that grew from concrete when no one else ever cared”