Enter Home Planet News Poetry of Issue #6                         Page 41
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Fourteen Compositions for a Female Chorus
   (from the painting by Carlo Maria Mariani)

Chorus of women
each with warble & pitch
love the caged breathing of mares.


A girl leans precariously over the balcony,
her hair wild with sleep,
one bare foot all the rush of boys.


It is hard to define the wonder in the head
of a god hoisted off its shoulders with rope,
hung from the colonnade.


There is so little air up here it is hard to breathe.
Even the way light sets aside theory,
one walks away falling.


The question is why this butterfly is
painted so delicately. The dust of its wings
invokes pity from old cracked walls.


We imagine rooms in
the harp player’s hands
each with its own shadow.

Even where there is nothing but stone
the sopranos find water. High throats
open blue robes in shade.


The long rows of worn out tile
are days of tangerines & espresso,
old laughter sleeping in the length of it.
Something could fall forever from here.
A salmon-colored gown with evening
in its folds.


Beyond the door, we imagine a snake
because what reason would the door not
be there?


Long after they leave, one
stays with her arm around the
fluted column, a little red & looking out.


This place has happened before
at a time when they tried
but could not move their hands.


They stand in a circle
in which gravity fails for
just a bar of music.


Once when they believed,
they made girls from glittering dust
shaken from their hair.


  Lenny DellaRocca