Para-stalsis, Color-Blind, Stealing the Romance from the Sky

By Julie K. Shavin


Photo courtesy of David Wild (

I like men
who provide food for thought.
They are rare, though,
at best, medium rare.
They ruminate, like cows,
with fewer stomachs,
less soulful eyes.
I like when they beef up
my neurons,
force-feed tough concepts,
stimulate brain-farts and
epiphanies sans stink.
I don’t eat men like air,
like Sylvia did, but ingest
the best like a cool brook
in abominable August.
I like men who make me
forget their gender,
but manage to feed me mine.


ice-bluephoto © 2009 riccardo | more info (via: Wylio)
If you look into a man’s eyes
bluer than your own
and can’t recall the place
where sky and ice clone –
(alien landscape rocked inside
the breeze’s peace)
(feeling afraid yet so at ease) –
then you have never dreamed,
have mistaken the breeze for reality
nothing has ever been true
color is a thing unknown to you.


Stealing the Romance From the Sky

Orion's Swordphoto © 2009 Brian | more info (via: Wylio)
Oh, but he was only doing his job.
Colors were a spectrum,
numerical, calculable.
Constellations went from
pictures to physics.
The music of the spheres
was gravitational pull.
There was helium; there was dust.
Stars I wished upon were dead.
I proved poor in astronomy
only out of protest.

And she was just being a friend,
saying that all was chemical:
friendship, love, passion,
which way to cook an egg,
dreams of future, dragoons of past,
never choice, but instinct:
lust for pleasure, avoidance of pain,
synaptic fires in the brain.

A bit of knowledge
can be quite the ponder,
a calculus of black hole
where once there was wonder.


Julie K. Shavin, born almost smack in the middle of the cruelest month, is a writer, composer, visual artist, and animal-welfare advocate. She is currently working with National Mill Dog Rescue. She has three children, ages 24, 19, and 12, and is president of Poetry West in Colorado Springs, CO.


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2 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Nareg Derpetrossian says:

    I really liked how in the “Para-stalsis” food was being compared to being used as thoughts. The description of the food made me feel connected to the point of view of the animal when he/she receives food from men. Really liked it! (:

  2. Jamie Choi says:

    These poems are really well written, because in all three of them I could visualize what was happening in my head. I especially liked Para-stalsis because of how they used rare and medium rare to describe the quality.

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