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Walker-Lass & Sulzenko – November 2022

JC Sulzenko (who also writes as A. Garnett Weiss) and Debbie Walker-Lass traded art and words. Debbie shared this image, titled “Amy and the Queen,” with JC:

In response, JC wrote this poem:

Perchance to dream

Eyes closed, I lean back against bolsters that keep 
the weight of my head off my stiff, sore shoulders.

Naked, I slip into sleep, but my mind does not rest,
not really, as I open a chest of drawers.

From the top one, I release moths and myths: How I aspire to
perfection, perfect as a red rose before its petals curl and brown, 

as a lover who waits to be loved, as a poet whose vagabond 
words in elegant envelopes seek a home, somewhere.

From the middle drawer, I set free fables and fears: 
How I win a race at a rocky summit, wish on stars

for a wealth of happiness, drink exotic cures 
to prolong life, run with Cheetahs at 75 MPH.

From the third, I select a tree, still summer green.
I hear chickadee-dee-dee before the bird lands with sharp,

cold feet to peck at Nyjer seed in my hand.
And when the hum of a worker bee, serving its queen,

wakes me. I can’t remember a moment without the clatter
of news, fake and real, without the clutter of stuff—

mine, all mine. The layers, like in archeology,
expose my life to all comers. So be it.

* * * * *

JC, writing as A. Garnett Weiss, shared this poem with Debbie:

Recovery efforts

Rare dreams, 

some of which may have been true,

nurture victims of early sorrows

with kindness

we don’t have enough language for.

Key: Individual words are drawn unaltered from obituary articles and
death notices published in the Toronto Globe and Mail on July 29, 2017.

In response, Debbie made this image, titled “Cherish Togetherness Forever”: