Lisa Alexander Baron

Lisa Baron

Lisa Alexander Baron is the author of 4 collections of poetry including, While She Poses (Aldrich P, 2014) and Reading the Alphabet of Trees (Finishing Line, 2007). Her ekphrastic poems have recently appeared in Chautauqua Literary Review, Confrontation, and The Maier Museum of Art website. Her poem The Cellar Boy, by Chardin was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize by The Milo Review. She is a graduate of VCFA and teaches at LaSalle University in Philadelphia.

Poems below from Lisa Alexander Baron’s new poetry collection: While She Poses (Aldrich Press, 2014).

Penelope to Odysseus

       I know you are not dead — I see the blues and greens
of the waters and islands your ship passes!
I have learned to ignore these weak men
and their flimsy elegies. What of a waxy plum
or a rare bird feather? Do they really think these ‘treats’
will get me to howl like a dog? But only spiders,
these tiny, dark, intricate bodies at my feet and never
far from sight, high-kicking across corners and walls — this,
this is the company I want to keep. I love the way they watch me;
and how I out-spin them! We have learned to share this
temperamental light: morning’s embrace and night’s moonlit arms.
Our limbs are in sync: now arm, now leg, arm, arm, leg…
When I return each dawn to tear this web, I can count on
their shimmy and shine across these rainbowed crossroads —
it’s like I’m spying on them. But how, too, they spy on My work!
I am even learning how to wait for you; how it can take
an entire afternoon to trace a purple filament through my loom.
I am inseparable from its frame — I have tied it on my back.
It has become a spare set of bones. Only, what does
the color of blue, say these skeins of the sky sound like?
What sadness does green, does the grass carry?
If I could only get their pitch right —
the way, say, that twist of blue-green seaweed is
whistling now as it wraps around the prow of your ship.

Ariadne to Theseus

    My eyes were closed, but I wasn’t
sleeping when you left me
on that rain-drizzled beach.
It was just easier to say
I had no idea; but you gazed out
too many times at your ship’s sails
slow-pacing in the wind.

    Everyone has stopped asking me
about you. They are all too lost
among my husband’s endless
racks of bottled wine.

    Sometimes late at night when
I’m awake in his arms, Dionysus
doesn’t know I still
work the monster’s maze
in my head; hear your laughter
behind me, before I trip on
a live wire I’ve mistaken
for a string of thread.

Poetry in this post: © Lisa Alexander Baron
Published with the permission of Lisa Alexander Baron