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Living and Working - Aurora Australis above Halley VI module

Living & Working

Samples of Work

Home » Living & Working » Artists and Writers Programme » Successful Applicants » Melanie Challenger: BAS Artist in Residence 2007-08 » Samples of Work »

Blue Whale

In the dark of the museum's unhallowed arcs,
They have hitched high the lazuli coma of her fin,
Lashing the bearded pannier of her craw.
Mortified, bellying the air - Ocean Boudicca -
Gliding as a jumbo-jet, the ocean her night-terror.

The philosophic smile brooks all agonies, willing sacrifice,
And the afterthought eye, like a portrait's intimate study,
Plays shadows from the mind's den -
For an apocalypse of all that is undergone,
Unctiously, earnestly, flesh the decoy.

Her gargantuan heart is the holy ark, a fleshy jeroboam
Whose brew is the weltliebe wherein the infinite
Possibilities of human love find glittering passage;
Or a subsidiary brain in whose glistening sanctum
Man's sturm und drang silts like tealeaves in porcelain.

Subdued to so much meat, she's heavy
In the air, drowning beneath her fathoms,
The mighty eloquence of her breast-stroke, attuned
To the echoes of waves, leadens to extinction,
Blood's alchemy conjuring the glorious jeroboam into a tomb.

Everyman has recurring dreams in which he swims
The briars of her veins, intending to the profoundest depths
Of which he might be capable, sifting for perfection
As her magnitude commands. In the dark, all eyes askance,
The memories of her monolithic ego begin to heave.

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