Sunday Jun 23

StewartIda Ida Stewart is the author of Gloss, winner of the 2011 Perugia Press Prize. She has new poetry forthcoming this spring in The Tusculum Review. A native of West Virginia, she currently lives in Philadelphia. Gloss is available for purchase via the publisher.

from “The Tide Pools”

Blue-green to blue to
violet, blue-green to blue
to violet: ir-

idescent slug of
a slurry lake like a jewel
sunk into the cusp

of nature à la
press-on nail, à la mood ring:
the nacreous shell

of a hand fallen
open, come to land on a
shoulder, find it so-

lid as any numb-
er of places full to the
brim of offering.


I want to call this
rupture: I want to say up-
heaval, but it’s rhy-

thm we set our clocks
to: to blue to violence:
to blue: to blue-green

to blue to time lapse
film of the perennial
gardens in the ghost

town seething up like
jets of blood or ink were ink
power that paper

had all along, just
waiting to be coaxed or clawed
or flooded or dug

out from within its
fibers: peony, iris,
azalea bursts

a gaze would cut, a-
rrange into bouquets: let me
find a vase for these.


The sea shivers, foams
up like alveoli: blue
wisteria haze—

blue as a surfac-
ing body—inhales the bare
spring tree like a breath:

blue mussel husks wing
open at the sternum hinge
to admit the tide:

as many redbud
petals as days the sun shook
loose: phytoplankton

bloom green to then dis-
solve, interrupt water’s breath-
taking coherence.


Either that or the
wisteria is the breath,
wrung out and hung up:

impression of sky
slung across impression of
lung staked like a claim:

this spring’s sprung, you see:
you there, know that this portion
is still viable:

either that or what-
ever you’re drawing and hold-
ing within, now out:

that or an orna-
ment—a blue shiner on your
pride and on your joy.