Two Poems

The Fruit Bowl in My Dreams

Thick palette knife strokes. Wet and shiny.

I paint the still life of a fruit bowl in my dreams: plump cherries,
patches of blue mold on an orange, 
grapes, limp and shriveled, 
and the banana, its peel speckled, hiding sweetness. 

            A still life unlived,      

    Is it considered art if nothing exists upon awakening?

Strange the way humans create all these things to hold our thoughts,
        our memories, outside our mind,
        giving them over to others
        to critique,

A connection often frayed in the sharing,
and yet holding it all inside oneself leads
to a loss of feeling or overfilling feelings, 

                    frozen like a still life, 

In the Wheat Fields 

A stranger asks me, 
            “What do you mean by holding space?”

We stand next to a golden field. Wheat rustles in the evening breeze.
A Labrador retriever sits near her boots 
while we chat about neurodivergent thinkers. 

My son runs ahead 
along the dusty path at the edge of the city.

I’m an expert on nothing, but I know that a child needs to live 
            with a space that’s open and free, 
            unencumbered by judgment in a world 
            so quick to critique.

Space is ethereal, 
                        a silent witness to becoming oneself. 

But what of the stranger’s question.

I shake my head, slipping away from my thoughts.

            “Holding space is like the dog sitting by your feet.”

Jes Wright

Jes Wright is an artist, writer, and a Certified California Naturalist from Northern California. She earned a MA in Individualized Studies (Creative Nonfiction/Sociology) from Goddard College. A lover of open mics and poetry readings, Jes has read her poems in places like Bowery Poetry Club in NYC and smaller venues in western New York. She has self-published a few poetry chapbooks. Some of her blogs/poems have appeared in theElephant Journal, The Tattooed Buddha, and The Urban Howl. Her work includes poetry, short stories, and the long game of novel writing. She’s drawn to stories about the interplay between place and psychology.