Art and poetry on page and stage



Emily Skillings


She came from a small town in Alaska
under the historic site known fondly by the locals
as Dispersed Media Steepletop, a well-built bridge
where a bridge incident occurred, producing egg-blue
foam (which was her, though she was also a girl).

The foam retracted itself through the gorges,
racing against her predetermined half-life,
becoming an almost acid blue, connecting sturgeon
in British Columbia to their favorite mechanical toy
platforms, reuniting nymphs with their adversaries,
smoothing out macho conference calls
with hushed tones, misaligning cash registers.
Freethinking and pouring, she became a mesh
of deep cultural understanding.

Draining minerals, oils and salutations from
rock beds and evangelical radio, she achieved
maximum volume and density. When the foam
reached the inauguration, the officials churned
inside her. Everyone fell asleep and found
a lap to rest in.

You recognize her years later in a Styrofoam cup
in one of America’s most illustrious showrooms.
She loved not you nor me as all we love her.

Everything is all good, unsaid, sorted out now.
Celluloid cones break with light.
The air is confused about where it ends.
Yet are you satisfied?
You are becoming intimate with that fresh feeling.

From the chapbook Backchannel, Poor Claudia (Portland, OR).