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©1999-2020 Debbie Cannatella​

poetic musings

Consider The Pear

 

Consider the pear

 

as many poets do

the asymmetrical swell,

wide berth, heavy hipped,

rounded like woman

 

Thin skin,

barely stretches over flesh,

so easily bruised,

so tempting when ripe.

Complex and divine.

Handle with care.

Shaped like the womb

of the Great Mother,

dressed in a blush of pink,

dappled and mottled,

sienna and azo.

 

It is the fetching way

in which it sits atop a table,

leaning to the left,

stem curved

as if pointing

to some unseen origin.

Lumpy, bumpy, heavy hipped

Not at all like me,

well, sometimes like me,

well, often like me.

Rounded like a woman.

 

Thin skin

barely stretches over flesh,

so easily bruised,

so tempting when ripe

Complex and divine.

Handle with care.

Grackles Cackle

 

Dusk is near
Can you hear?

A line is the shortest distance
between two points
but at dusk a line becomes
random and broken.
High above
grackles cackle.

Perched on lines
their movement shifts
as one flies into
an already crowded perch
like rows of church goers
squeezed into pews
on Sunday morning
shifting over
grumbling,
making room
for the one
that showed up late.

The call begins
a mixture of skwawk and trill
whistle-click-click
the grackles cackle
like Italian Strega
keepers of the village
three wise women
discussing everyone else's business.
A fowl colloquium

Eerie recollection
of stuffed blackbird
pinned to a shoulder
of a running Tippi Hedren.
Blonde bouffant
pecked and teased
by raven stylists
while Hitchcock looks on.

I wince and shiver
as grackles cackle
dusk is near.

Dismantled

 

Leaning precariously on a tottering crutch,
betrayed by limbs of an aging vessel,
robbed of dignity, mobility, civility
I fight against prevailing winds

Grasp, therefor, a mere semblance of worth
while clinging, submerged in deluge of change,
longing for isolation: run away, run away!
I am stork, and heron, and flamingo.

Wrinkles

 

A grid of little

diamond shapes

lay across the hand

that grips the

steering wheel

Before me.

A movement of a thumb

creates elongated lines

like the folds of velvet draperies.

 

Jong says women see wrinkles

as a deep and bitter groove,

a San Andreas fault

awaiting an earthquake.

 

For me, its a road map to follow

which takes me to the front porch

of a whitewashed house

where my five-year old self

holds the handle

of a Sears dress box

packed full of Barbies

I warn my parents,

"I’m gonna run away!”

 

One road has me,

not gripping

the steering wheel,

but the hands

of my seventeen year old

in the delivery room.

Babies having babies.

New life emerges.

Tiny, tiny hands

Gripping my finger,

not yet wrinkled,

but soon.

 

My hands are strong hands

with creviced road maps

which lure me to remember.

They are my mom’s hands,

hands I stroked as a child.

And are the hands of my great aunts.

 

They are my grandmother’s hands

with thinning skin

and aging veins

like waterways traversed

upon mother earth.

They are the hands

of my great-grandmother,

Standing before

the brick ovens of Sicily.

 

These are my hands

decorated

with a grid of little

Diamond shapes

and elongated lines

like the folds

of velvet draperies.

Instead


If my paintbrush were capable of touching the sky
I would sweep it across the horizon
and paint salmon-rose clouds
against a favorite blue backdrop.
The sun's intense passion would show
in shades of red-orange and coral
mirroring my own love of life
and slowly lower itself behind the trees
as if testing the steaming waters
of a newly drawn bath.

I'd give you the gift of sky color.

Were I able to capture the smell before a storm
I would offer it for you to breathe deeply.
The darkened pregnant clouds would drift
as if dragons protect the skies
while their ground-shadows below
cool the heat of the day for those in their path.
The steady rhythmic rain-drumming
would complete the renewal,
a welcomed setting for a back porch rocker
and a book of introspection.

I'd give you the gift of cleansing earth waters
and lazy afternoons.

Would that I merely raise my arms to the sky
and wind would softly brush my skin at my desire
I'd have it rustle through branches
of the great trees of the forests -
the aspens quaking with patterns
of silver-green, silver-green, silver-green
or the slender sweeping fingers of the bald cypress
telling delicate hand stories to its children.
I'd have the wind carry autumn leaves
gently rocking in slow arcs
as they fall to the blanketed earth.
Layers of breezes to stroke your skin,
a whispered quiet of forest sounds
to surround a large hammock in the midst.

I would gift you with the soft breath of the One.

Instead I leave behind mere memories
of a life lived in color,
lived with passion,
lived intensely
And I leave behind these thoughts:

Paint the sky – touch it with your color.
Breathe the rain and dance to its steady drumming.
Close your eyes against the wind and know that I reach for you.
Sit with the trees and listen to them talk to one another.
I will whisper along side them.
Can you hear me?
 

 Leaving Ruidoso

 

Charred cedar and pine
from recent fires
render mountain hills balding
as if chemotherapy
left its scalp shining
through thinning hair

Down the mountain
land swells into lowlands
dotted in sage and cedar
with rocky ravines
eroding pathways
for flooding waters.
Dry color of olive and clay
Against intense blue.

Cumulus balloons of
brilliant white edges
billowing above
lavender grey bottoms,
as if seared flat on a cook top.
Shapes of Volkswagen beetle
racing across the sky

I travel underneath,
And slice through
Land shadows,
leaving them behind.

In the distance I see
cumulonimbus looming
with its tall, ominous height
atop bands of diagonality.
Rounded hills flattening,
vultures ride the currents.

The storm ahead hangs
like a veil to be drawn;
a curtain of water,
z baptism before
the flatlands of Texas.