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In memory:
 Presenting the beautifully vivid work of Debra Tenney:



 Destiny's Child    

A restless mistral
infinite in its
scarlet prelude

one strand of
blue coral awash
in a sea green valley

unborn I stand
on this mezzanine
l ifting my gaze
to promise

warm chocolate
melting alfresco
spilling over into
this compelling myth

I am immune
to this chilled rift
yet bonded in
bittersweet betrothal

 © D. Tenney


(consider  translated  =  'to be with  the stars'
con = with,  sider = star)

The will to unearth
let go of non-essentials
to build bridges between
traditional  beliefs and  spiritual harvest,
to bow  before  deeper  and higher intellect
brings us to the  threshold of a  new cycle

Under the streetlight of our desire
Bric-a-brac  from  in  a grandparent's  hope chest
tokens of a  life, perused  will  spill their
hidden but present messages
diamonds among the cobwebs

Clever words  will  not free relic  ideals
or stay our capricious growth
of personal ambition
in our brightly colored
junk yard union with power-over

intuitive weighing of alternatives
questioning and challenging
penetrating and courageous
a preference of choice
rehearsing as proper reflex
the collective unconscious
mutual benefit  over  ego-consciousness

Consider the stars or
a  desert  sunset  after a  summer  storm
Consider dew drops crowning a rose
Consider the excellence of what is
existing only to illuminate
creative perfection   

© D. Tenney

Webmistress Note:

life doesn't  seem  fair.
It is
one of those times
that Debra  has

Read,  absorb,
read again.

 A Stitch in Time
© D. Tenney

 In that space
where origin and consequence
I embrace this uninvited guest...
observing the Sphinx's Riddle.

Heaven is a two way street
a shooting star heralding Ceasar's
ascent and the descent
of a savior.

Us mortals like
an unwitting Herod
grappling with the
kismet of both,
jackals, eating
flesh from bone,
the remains transformed
into promise
upon the desert floor.

Metamorphose, eternal saga
rearing its onerous head
in this inevitable dance.

Like the Pharaohs...
I have built my monument
upon the shifting sands
of occasion...
weaving a perennial dream,
spun with gossamer and stone...
Cleopatra and the asp
caught between eternity and moment.

In that moment,
purpose unraveling like
thread in a hand stitched quilt...
caught between the stitch and
the seamstress.

 Desert Summer

       Shredded tire rubber  
       strewn along highways, evaporating  
       into forever mirages,  
       token pools of cruel illusion.  
       Tin cans, broken glass swept  
       along sand, dry arroyo beds  
       offer windless shade  
       to torpid lizards, scorpions.  
       Seared watering holes, cracked mud
       adorns mesa tops like desert lace.  
       Castoff refrigerators,  
       chicken-pocked with 22 holes,  
       coolness bled dry  
       beneath gathering  
       summer clouds, spitting lightening  
       - unfulfilled promises.  
       Fervid sunsets boil like swarms  
       of red ants, soothsayers of  
       fire-storms, purging  
       parched mountains.  
       Buzzards pick clean  
       the bones of decaying carcasses  
       shielding dormant seeds, coiled  
       like rattlesnakes  
       in sand and ash  
       the first drops of rain.

       © D. Tenney

 In the Next Yard

        Between the rhythm
       of a rocking chair
       and hard wood,
       loneliness cries out  
       . . . in the next yard
       a robin, red on brown
       lights on a limb,
       paling green with spring,
       dichotomy running
       sweet and sour
       in each note
       the bird sings.

       through metal links,
       which embrace exile
       within exposed symmetry,
       sitting beyond
       the edge of gray
       a tulip blooms,
       inside a whiskey barrel . . .
       splintered by thirst.
       Its fragile bloom
       wilting above
       the dripping faucet
       as weeds lap up
       the moisture below.

       © Debra Tenney

   Awaiting the Bus

        Dragonfly wings whir  
       to the thrum of the city.
       Sky leaking through
       the cracks  
       of downtown monoliths.

       Circular hum of  
       rubber churning asphalt.

       Honey bees buzz  
       around patches  
       of color trapped  
       inside geometric stasis,
       creating  harmony  
       in the midst of  
       discordant structure.

       Singular atonements
       in this connect the dots
       labyrinth of  
       one way mayhem.

        © D. Tenney


       The argument was a mullein dream
       deep violet on emerald,
       velvet passion cut short
       still drooping
       from years of drought.

       A mute swan,
       broken wings beating
       within the ken of my desire,
       I found myself drowning inside tears,
       those sapphire sisters of pain,
       engulfed in lovers pride,
       consumed in crystalline despair.

       You reached out
       limitless in your compassion
       transforming iron pyrite to gold
       gently unraveling the filigree cage
       which bound my heart,
       breathing essence into stone,
       impregnating it with joy,
       making it transparent
       beneath your gaze
       and I am lost in free fall
       your tenderness the mossy bed
       into which I surrender,
       at peace at last.

       © D. Tenney

 Ode to Poets

like hailstones,
the joy
the pain
the love
tender moments,
                             eruptions of rage.

Moments captured
caress by caress.

Words woven into
like origami birds,
static form...
seeking to contain
which strike like
then evaporate.
Leaving ghostly notions
     an aftertaste,
vague memories
spun dry of essence
by time.
Making poets of
average people,
who try to capture
in words
this fleeting moment
called life.

                            © D. Tenney


I awaken to a bed devoid  
of sharp angles & deep furrows  
and I am reminded  
of a light house  
on a windy strand,  
September waves  
rolling over its base,  
and of yesterdays  
when that was enough.  
Of time when  
the chilled wind  
of February  
did not fill me  
with spring longing.  

buried beneath this desert  
of tangled bed,  
in which I am drowning,  
in a space once my asylum,  
I am a winter cottonwood  
surrounded by tumbleweeds,  
static form amidst chaos.  

I lay awake  
and drink deeply  
of your pillow's essence  
hoping as the first hyacinth  
purples March's burnt umber  
I will hear your footsteps  
in twilight's first blush.  

                         © D. Tenney


Suspended in time,
I sit here   
in trembling stasis  
between twilight fever  
and remembrance.  
Your being explodes
through plastic and  
passionless wire,  
voice rekindling the fervor  
of a day old  touch.

This current  raging,  
feeding itself...
fire and air, until
the water bearer  
spills her urn
upon the crystal pool
which is your domicile

Intoxicated by every nuance,
I am drowning in the  
golden umber of eyes  
that look beyond  my soul,
exposing me to myself,
naked and unashamed
beneath your gaze.

These are the moments  
that myths are made of,
the obsession that sends
young men into battle
and poets into eremitic
frenzies of verse,  
The Authurian chalice,  
from whence pours
the sweet nectar of  Gods.

    © Debra Tenney