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Pencil & Sand Dance

February 24, 2012

Beginning with a line by Lisa Jarnot from a poem she began with a line by Frank Lima

by Kate Marchetto

And how terrific it is to see the stars inside the radios,
how terrible, to read their dials and find pencils,
pens, markers; how terrific it is to write
with the radios’ pencils, unsharpened and blended
to make this night; how terrific it is to use the radios’ pencils
to draw clouds in the sky, as if they appeared by
the breath of a sheep in a field, the breath of God; how terrific

the field peppered with sheep and sand dunes, the
shadows of the stars etched into their surfaces—
and how terrific it is to see the stars inside the sand.
How terrific the sand, sculpted from the scalloped foam
that edges the sea; and how terrific it is to eat sea scallops
in Boston in May, their jaws pried open—how terrific
their tongues, how terrible their silence—how terrific it
is to eat scallops in silence in Boston in May.

And how terrific it is to sculpt the sand on which the stars are etched,
how terrific the toes that undertake this task, how terrible
their purpose in balancing a step. How terrific it is to step
in sand and step again, reading the poems written
with each of the radios’ pencils; how terrible the importance
to these poems of the radio, the sheep, the sand, the scallops, the stars.

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Kate Marchetto is a native of Eastern Pennsylvania. She is an alumna of the University of Pittsburgh and a current candidate for the Queens University of Charlotte Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. Marchetto serves as the Editor for the New Fraktur Arts Journal, which is available (along with her chapbook, Quite Quiet) online. She lives with her husband in Norfolk, Virginia.

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  1. February 26, 2012 at 9:21 am

    One word, Terrific!

  2. February 27, 2012 at 4:46 pm

    Very nice–love the last stanza.

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