February 2018

text & photography by hunter Armistead

Instagram: @hunterarmistead

A Frame of Film,
A Line of Words,
Capture the Creative Culture of Our City

Ciona Rouse

From Vantablack (Third Man Books, 2017)

The Poet Posing Nude

Be not a body.
Be not a brain or the marching
band in your chest.
Be not limbs. Be red canna lily.
Be not stretched or stretching
Be not your cold nipples turned to blades ready to slice.
Be ready if someone needs
Be not black. Only.
Be orange and green
and brown, which is purple. Be blue.
Be line and the down slope
of shadow around your torso.
Be not torso. Be obtuse
angles. Be round at your core.
Be crowned at your core.
Honor the peacock
expanding in your belly.
Be not teeth. Be
doric columns in your
mouth. Let your shin shine
your skin electric. But
be not skin. Be not tendon.
Do not attach
to yesterday’s bones.
Be not muscle.

Be charcoal, be ash. Be able to be buried.
As the seed of a willow.
Be roots reaching.

Be index fnger seducing the goldfnch.
Leap from the page
like its song. But

be not song.
Be still. Be drawn.

—Ciona Rouse

www.cionarouse.com, Instagram:cionar

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