Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Deborah Bogen: Risk

In Sappho, the spaces name nothing — but the emptiness still speaks. Here, it says, is where you must imagine a fullness. The right verb. A noun that works. 

Sometimes nothing comes. Then you must go slack and let your mouth form the O of emptiness, of zero, of no-idea-at-all. That way the poem will still be at work. Inside you. Nudging you toward life’s true question — how well do you handle risk

Can you imagine your thoughts mending Sappho’s? In your hand there’s a residue. In your hand, there’s a disfigured beauty in which an urgency remains. 


Deborah Bogen’s books include In Case of Sudden Free Fall (Jacar, 2018).

Copyright 2020 Deborah Bogen

Pompeian fresco of a woman generally believed to be Sappho.
This may not be an accurate likeness, as it was
painted about a century after her death.
Sappho was described in her lifetime as being
“small, dark and ugly” and “violet haired, pure,
honey smiling.”

3 comments on “Deborah Bogen: Risk

  1. Barbara Huntington
    October 28, 2020

    Thank you. I have been experimenting with spaces, emptiness.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Marc Crowley
    October 28, 2020

    Received this today and I thought you might be interested.

    Like

  3. Deborah Morris
    October 28, 2020

    Such a beautifully accurate statement…. keeping it so I can relight my desire to keep going.

    Liked by 1 person

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This entry was posted on October 28, 2020 by in Literary Criticism and Reviews, Poetry and tagged , , .

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