Trout Scales, White Oak, Red Corn, Buckhorn

All of Dora’s tattoos
resemble pictographs

cut in New Mexico’s
sandstone canyon walls.

She claims they were
under her skin first.

She remembers when
believers placed antlers atop her head.

Dora exhales the gravity-fires
of earth’s formation.

She remembers reaching out
and drawing in asteroids made of ice.

She remembers
the crucible of loneliness

filled with the ingredients of life
and casting double helixes.

copyright © 2019 Kenneth P. Gurney


The character Dora, who shows up in many of my poems, is some mix of person and mythology. Really, she is a vehicle for writing poems. She started out as my version of a Pandora (from the Greeks) character many years ago. I wish I was a bit more consistent in portraying her, but I am not. Oh well.

Over the years, I have had many characters arrive in poems who are a mix of person and mythology with fantastical characteristics. I think they arrive out of my dissatisfaction with the Bible and other holy books combined with my desire to be the writer of such tomes, since I believe them all to be human generated no matter the authors’ inspiration.

Love & Light.


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