Ten Poems by Neeli Cherkovski

truth is the studio grows dark
truth is the lines converge, death reigns
the dead rot of civilization floods
engines rust, grass devours them

truth is the unjust rise
truth is the unjust rule
truth is unjust, decide
truth is the studio glows

truth is in the hands
in how the fingers move
in what the mind has to say to the hands
in what the imagination wishes

truth is what the old gods favor
how the new gods play their games
truth is oil and gas
truth is a black rose, a white rose

Titian ruled
he rose in the illuminated dawn
he tore across night
his ruses are real

if the artist doesn't speak, then who?
when? why? what rules we live by
and how do we trigger the eyes
to glow, to move from Medina to Mecca?

Titian bore
all the freight he could
Titian deceived everyone
but how splendid he came

truth might be beautiful, maybe not
what is true one moment might not be later
give me one true moment, give us one true mind
break war, crave peace, bring beauty forward

October 1, 2001