for a moment of joy or moments no one pays for, i give myself a ‘jornal’. this makes me rich. try it.

transmutation (for One Shoot Sunday)

Photo prompt by Adam Romanowicz.

trapped in a shell
of dreams, the night careens
into an abyss–
the paradise of mollusks
unknown to stars

alien, Night
drowns in crystal tears
engorging shell hearts
layering an encrusted

the sea lashes
the mollusks and turns
Night into strands
of sea spray
Night, the alien

grows eyes
globules of crystals
floating as froth
a veil to hide the birthing

Night, the witness
in paradise becomes the sea
as heaving shells open
to let breathe the pearl
they birth

in the blinding brightness
Night leaps and grows wings
springing off its eyes
jewels of sparks

an ocean breath
exhales Night back to dying stars
Night, the prodigal
now smithereens of tears
rain on cupped leaves

frozen as
bejeweled Dawn
on leaf strands
en-clasped like it were
its heart

a shell

Composed from a photo prompt by Adam Romanowicz and
posted for One Shoot Sunday at One Stop Poetry, the inimitable gathering place for poets and artists. Come immerse yourself, better yet share your work and your ideas about others’. Check us out!


June 26, 2011 - Posted by | free verse, lyric poetry, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. This felt epic and breathless to me. The mollusks drew me into the piece, rich with ocean imagery. Well constructed, it flows like the sea.

    Comment by brenda w | June 26, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks for your wonderful comment, Brenda! I’m thrilled you liked it.

      Comment by alee9 | June 26, 2011 | Reply

  2. wow. you took us on quite the journey…from shell to night…loved whey it sprouted wings…very fantastical and an enjoyable poetic romp…fresh and different

    Comment by brian | June 26, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks again, hugely, Brian! I’m glad it worked out for you because I wrote it as if in a trance, simply following where the words took me. I love that part, too! Thanks again so much!

      Comment by alee9 | June 26, 2011 | Reply

  3. Hypnotic. Had my attention from the title. Read works by Piaget, and it always fascinated me that before turning to developmental psychology he was a noted biologist for his study of mollusks! Excuse the personal digression… Pure poetry. Very creative and written wonderfully 🙂

    “an ocean breath
    exhales Night back to dying stars
    Night, the prodigal
    now smithereens of tears
    rain on cupped leaves”

    Nice title too.

    Comment by dustus | June 26, 2011 | Reply

    • Haha…and I did hypnotize you or my poem did! Yes, I read about Piaget, too, in a book on education when I worked for a university. My poem must have arisen first from the dew on the palm frond and what looks like a shell in its center. How it became NIght and Dawn is now a mystery to me! But the I’m so at home with the ocean as you know I grew up in an archipelago of 7,000 islands. Thanks for loving that stanza, Adam. It’s my favorite, too, or one of two.

      Comment by alee9 | June 26, 2011 | Reply

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