Marc Harshman


In the beginning we come in after the big bang, after the six days, after the dream, after the good was still suspended, inviolate, among the clouds, a hot air balloon filled with hope and surety. Not much later, in a room next door, the creation gets going in earnest as she juggles the proto-types of creatures as yet unnamed, stomps her foot in anticipation of their dancing while the three-headed scarecrow in motley straitjacket begs an extra dose of mercy. She may be listening, but she can not see his suffering, only sense there is a ripple now in the distant sky where memory has been seeded, that covenant whose remembering shall lift us out of the wasteland of boxes tipped and tumbled, forgotten. This side up if you are to see through the mayhem to where the bow is strung between the clouds. Bees are in the honeycomb, sweet and misery ordered together, puzzles yet to come. If I knew the way, I would take you home.

This prose poem originated as a response to the painter Donald Swartzentruber's request for writers to illustrate with words the 36-panels of his monumental Totem Triptychs (

No comments: