Monday, May 09, 2016

A Poem in Progress

In a story recently I used the phrase "black shine," and most members of my writing group didn't like it because they had no idea what it meant or how to visualize it. But for me, the phrase is evocative and sensuous. It creates plenty of clear images for me. Anyway, I decided to try to capture the meaning of it for me in a poem, and below is a piece of that. It's not done yet. Who knows when it will be.

Black Shine

In the black shine
she waited with Wendigo eyes
and a pillow smile.

Wind had curled her hair,
had rouged her cheeks.
Gin had painted her lips.

The fingernails that scraped
her silks
spelled my name in Braille.

Black shine, dark soul

I am lost


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

It's an evil glow?

Vesper said...

Oh, I love this! Those Wendigo eyes... Makes me think of your stories in "Midnight in Rosary"
And "black shine" is perfectly normal... :-) :-) :-)

Cloudia said...

"Shine" has been a slur for "Black" person, which I know was NOT an association in your creativity, Charles. Just mentioning that as possible source of some readers' unease. Pity, because I see that you are working to communicate a true insight of your own musing. A fascinating situation! Best wishes to you and Lana-

Charles Gramlich said...

Alex, black shine to me is really a sensuous gleaming light that reflects off of black silk or satin.

Vesper. well of course, since I am so normal. :)

Cloudia, Yes. But as you noted, no association with that in this piece. I think the group members didn't know about the "shine" as slur concept. The shine to me is a light gleaming on black silk.

sage said...

Sounds like she's planning on you for dinner...

I googled the term "Black Shine" and came up with this which I found interesting:

Charles Gramlich said...

Sage, that is interesting. I wonder if I've heard something about this in passing at some point and that helped to influence the phrase coming up in my head.

Erik Donald France said...

I like it, black shine, & the poesie.

Charles Gramlich said...

Erik, thankee!

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

Charles, sometimes I come up with phrases that I think are pretty good and I try and use them somewhere. "Black shine" sounds good to me.

Charles Gramlich said...

Prashant, thanks!