October 31, 2022

Take Heart by 
Bonnie Riedinger, abstract painting with blue on top and gold on bottom

Image: “Take Heart” by Bonnie Riedinger. “Fibers” was written by Ashley Caspermeyer for Rattle’s Ekphrastic Challenge, September 2022, and selected as the Editor’s Choice. (PDF / JPG)


Ashley Caspermeyer


My silk dress.
My mother’s voice
tickles my memory.
You should have changed.
I’m a crack in the sidewalk
noticed for the wrong reasons
avoided at the cost—
of ruining something beautiful.
Tackle the stain before it sets.
Blot out your mistake before
it seeps into the delicate fabric
of what you’re remembered for.
My fingers tremble at the task.
My cautious smear paints
the blue poppies in pollen,
penetrating their petals,
heavy with the weight
of living.

from Ekphrastic Challenge
September 2022, Editor’s Choice


Comment from the editor, Megan O’Reilly: “Both the craft and emotion of Bonnie Riedinger’s painting are delicately reflected in Ashley Caspermeyer’s ‘Fibers.’ As the painting ebbs and flows visually, the structure and music of the poem moves with it. The imagistic contrast of yellow and blue is beautifully suggested in lines like ‘ruining something beautiful’ and ‘petals/heavy.’ While each piece is strong on its own, together they create an elegant, resonant harmony.”

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