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In this new poem, Devon Balwit takes the abstract forms of Laura Page’s art work as a starting point for creative potential and a powerful human narrative.


Caryatid I
Caryatid I by Laura Page

I.
always, they ask you
to move mountains

with wings reclaimed
from boulders–

what can be done
must be done.

Caryatid II
Caryatid II by Laura Page

II.
you hear them
before you see them,

soldiers crossing
the field, feel

their stocks splitting
you in rough reminder

you are weak.
you grab what you can

and run, the baby,
the blanket,

after weeks
on the road,

there is no telling
the difference.

Caryatid III
Caryatid III by Laura Page

III.
now, you are coals
kicked under,

heels dragged
through dust.

if any dare touch
your canted beam,

you will topple
and crush.


Caryatid V
Caryatid V by Laura Page

Caryatid V

Down she drops, precipitous,
a comet tail, Icarus’ wings

melting wax; or, less dire, a Naiad
diving into a pool, tree-crowns

clapping; or aflame—her windy
plummet only a suspension of

the hard business of dying; or,
spangle-skinned, dangling upended

from a circus rope, ringed
by astonishment; or lifted so

in private dance, sweaty against
her partner. I hope the latter.


 Laura Page is a poet and artist from the Pacific Northwest. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Rust + Moth, Crab Creek Review, TInderbox Poetry Journal, The Rumpus, TINGE, and others. Her chapbook, “epithalamium” was named the winner of Sundress Publications’ 2017 chapbook contest and is forthcoming. Her paintings have been featured recently in A-Minor Magazine and the Indianapolis Review.
Devon Balwit teaches in Portland, OR. She is a poetry editor for Minute Magazine and has seven chapbooks and one full-length collection out or forthcoming. Her individual poems can be found in Cordite, taplit mag, Menacing Hedge, The Cincinnati Review, The Carolina Quarterly, Fifth Wednesday, The Stillwater Review, Red Earth Review, The Fourth River, The Free State Review, Posit, The Ekphrastic Review, Glass: A Journal of Poetry, Rattle, and more.
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