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December 2010

December 2010 -- African Mythology

Gallery

Columns

  • Behind the Art:
    African Watercolor, Part 2
  • Artist Spotlight:
    Interview with Laura Pelick
  • EMG News:
    News for December
  • Ask an Artist:
    Storyboarding

    Features

  • African Skin Walkthrough

    Fiction

  • Poem: Shango


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  • Immortality
    by Vonnie Winslow Crist

    Her living room:
    pensive sun studies
    reflection in a golden sarcophagus,
    tilts his face, listens to the tick of pendulum;
    ocher wall-to-wall carpet ripples
    from sky-border to sky-border
    like Zawyet El Amwat's sand
    where her hands retrieved faience
    pottery fragments that now litter
    a display case at Selket's precious feet
    beside an unguent bottle, oil lamp, earthen jug.

    Scent of cream and blue hydrangea hangs
    like a pendant
    on dry breezes that rustle sheers, white
    as linen wraps on brown women.
    She kneels, sifts
    through Egyptology books with eyes sapphire
    as the Nile as it washes by Abu Simbel.
    Sun disc
    balanced by a falcon-god gilds
    her gray hair lighter than the alabaster
    scarab who wanders the window ledge.

    Indigo waterbirds from the palace
    at Tell at Amarna rise
    from papyrus and lotus on her wall.
    The cats have come to hunt like archaeologists
    for what remains in the Land of Kings.

    Tut, in full color, watches
    the black scarab, wings open,
    who waits on velvet
    ready to spread across
    a dead woman's chest and guard
    her embalmed form until the morning
    beyond remembered things.

    She glances at grains pyramiding
    in a timepiece.
    Multiple moons have slivered
    since last she dickered
    with a shriven vendor hawking his goods
    from a camel-pack on the outskirts of Cairo,
    darkened since last the Sahara
    pelted her burning legs,
    been born since last the shade of Meydum
    chilled her marrow.

    She cradles a drink in reverent hands.
    Her face, like a ghost,
    wavers in the water.
    She sees European bones and American blood,
    but her ba, her ka, and shadow
    belong to Egypt.

    Vonnie Winslow Crist , BS Art-Ed, MS Professional Writing, Towson University, is a columnist for "Harford's Heart Magazine," an illustrator for "The Vegetarian Journal," editor of "The Gunpowder Review," and a contributor to "Faerie Magazine." Cold Moon Press recently published a collection of her fantasy stories, "The Greener Forest," available at Amazon and elsewhere.
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