Disappearing Objects

About Iowa Writes

Since 2006, Iowa Writes has featured the work of Iowa-identified writers (whether they have Iowa roots or live here now) and work published by Iowa journals and publishers on The Daily Palette. Iowa Writes features poetry, fiction, or nonfiction twice a week on the Palette.

In November of 2008, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Iowa City, Iowa, the world's third City of Literature, making the community part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Iowa City has joined Edinburgh, Scotland and Melbourne, Australia as UNESCO Cities of Literature.

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FRANCES CANNON
Disappearing Objects

Frances Cannon hails from the coasts, both East and West.  She juggles too many passions for her own good: bookmaking, printmaking, writing, cooking, the art of the garden, puppetry.  She strives toward a certain aesthetic: a mixture of oddity, adventure, and natural beauty.  She recently self-published a handmade book of silkscreened prints and poems called Image Burn, and is in a constant state of artistic production.  She studied poetry and printmaking at the University of Vermont and is currently pursuing her MFA in nonfiction at the University of Iowa.

Left: Artwork by the writer, also titled "Disappearing Objects."



Don't look at your hands while juggling;
they should appear blurred, gesticulating skyward
as if rearranging the heavens. The Pleiades constellation
disappears the longer you stare.

I have been told to study my hands in the daytime;
Memorize their warmth, arrange each finger's position.
In my dream they flicker, drained of color and temperature,
but if I hold them steady they follow me through the night.

I grow accustomed to the habits of a body.
The lower lip bitten in concentration, the eager feet.
When I squint, shadows under his chin, nose, and brow
separate from three planes of light: forehead
like a plum freshly polished by shirt-sleeve,
and two cheeks singing under a lamp.

Behind eyelids, I see my hands
on the concave plane below his ribs,
imprinted in reverse color like the after-image
of a bulb. In the body's absence, the vision of skin
pulses and fades.

This page was first displayed
on October 30, 2014

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