Art – Poetry – Pam Siderewicz and Karen Elizabeth Sharpe

For our 2018 Art & Poetry pairing, one pairing was with artist Pam Siderewicz and poet Karen Elizabeth Sharpe.

Here are the works they created!

Pam Siderewicz provided this artwork to Karen Elizabeth:

In response, Karen Elizabeth wrote the following poem:


A half moon last night, rising
over an ice-skimmed Quinsigamond
and the slow earth turning away another day,
as we rolled to a stop, caught,
watching, the moon a sleepy eye winking
at the chain of lights on the highway below
and us in the car, a moon so like an upturned palm,
like a chalice, so like an offering
spilling the night out on the streets,
that as the engine stilled and the car cooled
we said nothing, but leaned our heads close
in the starlessness, in the black moon-poured sky.
Maybe it was the chill December air,
maybe the solstice coming on,

but no moon-pulled tides have ever been guided like this,
to the side of the road on a frigid night,
when best would be to head home, get on with things,
but this is what it means to be chosen to love,
to step out of the blind flow of traffic together,
to strip naked the ghosts of purpose we call self,
to lose our names, our reason in the process,
to ride the brim of a half moon rising,
to know there is not the right word for anything.

The second half of this pairing involved Karen Elizabeth giving Liz a poem as a starting point. Karen Elizabeth provided this poem:

The Old Dog Speaks

Each day you leave me. I have come
To expect it and do not suffer. By now
We wear each other like an old pair of slippers
And besides, I am tired. For 11 years
I have held my tongue, except when
The crows get raucous in the field out back
Yet now, I must tell you: There is nothing
To be afraid of. When I close my eyes
After you are gone, when my bones click
Into place, the field is all around me
Alight with daisies and purple clover
Full of bees. Each day you leave me
I see it more clearly, the jays and sparrows
In the brush, the gold of the sunlight
Going on forever. Listen, I have been
The bowl you empty your sorrows in
The warm fire of forgiveness to your rage
I have seen your shadows and your stars
And I am still here. At the moment
When you pass from that life to this
When the key turns in the door
When your heart leaps to life
Or forgets to even care
I have already given you mine.

In response, Pam created this artwork:

2018 Art-Poetry Pairing main page