Ways to Paint a Woman

Aug 21, 2017


Ways to Paint a Woman

  after a portrait by Ali-Al Ameri

Sometimes only color can speak
for the heart.

Sometimes you must paint it yellow—
listen with the eyes: honeycomb and maize,

golden rainflowers.
Transform with your softest brush

the way Lorca’s bathing girl liquefies
into water – half a head in fire,

sun burning a trail from forehead to cheek.
Graze the mouth with mango. Make time to blend

and take away. Use the green of a blind man
when he says you’re beautiful

and means you’re timeless.
Show what the light gave her

washing warmth into a neck
until it’s dune, a cliffside

that holds a head of surf.
Paint as you would before you awaken,

when sunlight falls like milkweed
and you are an empty silo

letting her grain fill you –
buttery malt and biscuit

for the love of honey


© “Ways to Paint a Woman,” Night Ladder by Lois P. Jones, Glass Lyre Press, 2017.

The official book launch for Night Ladder is scheduled at the one and only Flintridge Bookstore and Coffeehouse on November 5. Details may be found at the event Facebook page.

Find reviews of the collection in What We’re Reading: “Night Ladder by Lois P. Jones“.



To purchase a copy, please visit Glass Lyre Press.




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