Fata Organa

Poetry by Bridget Gage-Dixon Art by Mae LuIMG_20150213_004233
n. a flash of real emotion glimpsed in someone sitting across the room


A noble error this lurch toward the luminous,

your body quickens, you unfix your lips.

She ropes a wisp of hair around your finger

settles a quivering hand on her hip,

The pair of you proffer yourselves

to the steel blade of desire.


She is all sinew, you smoke,

She flowing mane and frailty,

you muscle and ruse.

You spark suddenly, she glows

beneath your gaze.


There are always several versions of this same story;

Some end with a symphony of sensuality

others in a slow march to the harsh cadence

of goodbye.


Of course she cannot know this now

but I was once the woman turning always toward you

once you were the man turning constantly away.

It was me then, igniting underneath you

back before I dissolved into cinder and slag.





Black sky dangles above the thin bones

of a garden trellis, on a chaise beneath it

you curl your spine to meet the knees

you’ve fold against your chest,

all your life you’ve tucked tragedy

into your pockets, secrets moldering

just out of sight.


Your hands, clasped, are covered

by a constellation of blue veins

memory, an unrelenting maelstrom,

thunders through you, a swift, sharp strike

to split persistent shadows.


There are words you cannot

bring your tongue to form,

a hundred wasps you’ve swallowed

they drone inside your throat.

You press them, when possible,

into your pleated heart, in the empty space

between each rib.


You look up through the maze of pole and wire,

past the lines that grid the heavens,

through the tarnish of street lamp,

you can almost see the boy you were

before the sky split open,

before moon went blind,

back when god survived.


Corn Rows

With the comb’s sharp black teeth

she scratches out a straight line,

lifts a section of coarse strands

neatly between her fingers, trying again

to teach to me to tame my daughter’s hair.

Her hands, familiar with the twist and turns

of braid, work without her eyes,

instruction flows seamlessly

as she twines hair with one hand,

with the other applies a thick blue balm.


I have bought the beads, the salve,

the tiny black bands to keep the braids

in place, but this is a skill I’ve yet to master,

to pull them tight enough to cling to scalp.


My daughter fidgets on the floor,

feet folded beneath her she rocks,

crashes, like a rogue wave into couch

and then recedes wincing as her aunt

tugs, tightens, does what I cannot,

twists tumult into order.


See more Mae Lu art on Instagram/Facebook at : Maelustudio33

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Global artists and writers dedicated to sharing creativity around the world.

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