Lightning, as Seen from New Mexico

from by Jill Battson

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lyrics

Lightning, As Seen from New Mexico

for Jacquie Jacobs

That night, the cloying Prussian sky –
sheet of damask hung from the heavens –
we stopped the car, stood along the roadside
and watched the Colorado horizon erupt and spark
into a white hot electricity that stung the eye
tearing, relentless pursuit of oxygen
and not a sign of rain, or hint of thunder
just the lemon lightning ripping zigzag spaces in the sky
as easy as persuading rotten fabric to rip
hint of gas-blue static-ing
the turned-on, tuned-in radio
positive ion smell sparking our nostrils
sheets of undulating light sliced
by forks and horns, the summer staff
later, on the covered adobe porch we breathe iron
our lightsome faces spark over glasses of burgundy
we sit mindful of rolling thunder lolling north
and the full body splash of surprised rain, gutters falling flood-like.

credits

from gratitude songs, released June 17, 2013

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about

Jill Battson Toronto, Ontario

Jill Battson is an interdisciplinary poet. She has written several plays as well as the libretti for two operas and produced an electro acoustic sound art project. Dark Star Requiem, for which she wrote the libretto, premiered at Toronto’s Luminato Festival in 2010 and was published in book form. Her new collection, The Ecstatic Torture of Gratitude, was recently published by Guernica Editions ... more

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