CHAIN 7: Virgins of the Rocks


Wingbone hollow, the winking
Cavemouth: two paintings / eight figures
Foregrounded and absent of
Attributes (Paris version)
Or haloed by thin loops of gold
Nearly identical otherwise save
A gesture or reverberant gaze
A blueshifted robe: either work may be
Invoked against the plague


Maybe in Montana there’s a Madonna
With her teeth ajar and all the local
Girls slink by to slip her slivered almonds
And listen to her whistling breath
This country is old by now and worn out:
The bats who swish around the belfry
Are goners, the people in passing cars are dead too
A bunch of benevolent ghosts
In whom no one will ever believe

Graeme Bezanson is the author of the chapbooks ECLOGUES and TCHICAYA U TAM’SI. His work has recently appeared in BOMB, glitterMOB, Metatron/OMEGA and PRISM International. He lives in France. More: +

If you want to be the next link in this poetic chain, send us one poem that creatively responds to Bezanson’s Virgins of the Rocks by Mar 30, 2021 — visit our Submittable for guidelines