Unbound Coal Shed
Ekphrastic Poetry,  Poems from the book Resting on my Laurels,  Poetry

Unbound – Coal Shed Studios Book Arts

It was my pleasure to write this poem for the Coal Shed Studios Book Arts Show. I read it there on 9.9.17. Watch the video.


Ignoring the binding that once anchored them

into cold, rational paragraphs,

the books were now free to become art,

to evolve beyond the intentions of their writer

into objects of dreamlike beauty

at the hands of those whose

ideas knew no such limits

as word counts or chapters.

Like butterflies on their first flight,

their pages were no longer confined

to the shapes they once inhabited.

Solidified in sculpture,

sketch, and paint

they sang out messages of peace, love and justice

that rang out through the gallery,

shattering the walls

for tyranny and censorship cannot stand

when artists build the world.

Their words floated freely into the evening sky,

as paragraphs dripped upon the pavement,

and the letters crunched heartily

in the mouths of all assembled

as they stared in awe at each

beautiful transformation.

The books delighted in the attention

that their new evolution had granted them,

spreading the word to the well-loved volumes

that sat calmly upon the shelves

in neatly organized rows,

that they, too, had reached immortality.

D.L. Lang is the current Poet Laureate of Vallejo, California. She is the author of ten books, and one spoken word album. Her poems have been published in the Benicia Herald, Jewish Journal, Poets Are Heroes Magazine, the Benicia First Tuesday Poets anthology Light & Shadow, and in A Poet’s Siddur: Friday Evening Liturgy through the Eyes of Poets. Lang has been a featured act at several events including the Vallejo Man March, Unity Day, Solidarity with Charlottesville, and International Peace Day. She is also a regular at Poetry by the Bay and leads the Poetry in Notion poetry circle. She has won ribbons and rosettes at the Alameda, Marin, San Mateo, and Solano County Fairs. Her poems have been transformed into songs, liturgy, and used as a means to advocate for causes.

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