CONJUNCTIONS: A Web Exclusive
Poems from CLOUD / RIDGE
Stephen Ratcliffe




10.10



pale blue white haze in front of the vertical

plane of the ridge in window on left, sunlit

orange flower on green passion-vine covered

fence in right foreground

                                         Secretary of Defense

unable to confirm the deaths of four UN workers

in Kabul, Taliban chiefs prepared to sacrifice

two million lives to maintain independence



silver-haired man in front of flesh-toned

rectangular plane on left, Debussy noting

movement of water across a plane of rocks

                                                                     girl

in boat noticing a leaf "losing its sharpness,"

the sea "more important now than the shore"



line of sun reflecting across nearly motionless

waterís surface, moon in pale blue sky above it





10.11



angle of bird slanting from lower right corner

of vertical window on the left, the pale blue

white sky above the horizontal line of still

dark ridge behind it

                                 Coleridge observing

"pillars of misty light" falling below sun

hidden by clouds, "great half moon setting

behind the mountain ridge"

                                           man in post office

also reading Virginia Woolf, shaved-headed man

patching ding on nose of board

                                                  girl in boat

dipping her fingers into the water, thinking

"how we perish each alone"

                                             lines of white

water moving across reef to the left of point,

man on a long white board slanting across light

blue green plane of wave breaking in left corner






10.12



horizontal pink white cloud in pale blue sky

above the still shadowed plane of the ridge,

bird calling in the window opposite unmade

yellow and blue bed

                                 woman on the radio

claiming people in New York are planning to move

to Alaska, janitor in Tower One recalling people

jumping from windows

                                     Pentagon spokesman noting

crosshair sights of missile trained on building,

woman pointing out that the military facilities

are located in heavily-populated heart of Kabul



Lily Briscoe still "looking out over the bay,"

thinking of the sea "without a stain on it"


white layer of foam on grey plane after wave

breaks, line of sun reflecting from left corner






10.13



brown bird perched on telephone wire slanting

from peak of roof to pole in upper left corner,

red finch landing on feeder in right foreground



man in blue shirt recalling his daughterís walk-

on line in Days Of Our Lives, "never mind your

turn will come"

                         man in black shirt reading

shapes of blue and red and green and black

letters, "next itís you Swainsonís thrush"



Lily Briscoe looking at the sea "which had

scarcely a stain on it," Mr. Ramsay sailing

further and further away

                                       sunlight-speckled

line of swell moving in across the blue green

waterís plane, white curve of spray blown back

from the wave breaking into the left foreground






10.14


pink orange light in grey white square of sky

across from unmade yellow and blue bed, song

sparrow calling from the lower right corner


blond woman with white-haired baby walking

toward the green French door, noting the orange

rectangular shape on top of the yellow column



woman at end of table pointing out that M13

Galaxy has several hundred thousand million

stars, a pair of orange and black butterflies

circling above the purple flower

                                                 Lily Briscoe

remembering "that razor edge of balance between

two opposite forces," thinking about "some such

feeling of completeness"

                                       white of jetís trail

parallel to the horizon, pale blue sky above it