Poetic Bookshelves

From the Outside to the Center by Maria L. Berg 2022

Today I thought I would have some fun and combine my photography and poetry for Of Maria Antonia‚Äôs 2022 Weekly Photo Challenge prompt “On the Shelf.” I rearranged my bookshelves to create poems from the book titles.

Here is how I read the first bookshelf poem:

From the Outside to the Center

The outsider
in the garden of blue roses
below the golden house
is nowhere wild, or
the watcher in the woods
lying in wait
I hear the owl call my name
and say, “The heart is a
lonely hunter. Teach yourself
to dream while on your
journey to the center
of the earth.”
After 20,000 dreams,
does the center hold?

Roads to the City of the Beasts by Maria L. Berg 2022

Roads to the City of the Beasts

Stained glass back roads,
Gaia star mandalas of
cognitive rehabilitation
pass the hollow where
the people of paper
are story-telling. It’s easy
just looking at great cathedrals
along the road to
the city of the beasts.

A cute cat with the word ZEST across him in orange print.
Zesty Kitty by Maria L. Berg 2022

That was fun. Unlike book spine poems I’ve done in the past, both of those feel like starts to longer poems, or works that may become strong poems through revision. And to go along with my title “poetic bookshelves,” the poetry books I’m reading and enjoying right now are (amazon associate links):

Indigo by Ellen Bass

Hybrids of Plants and Ghosts by Jorie Graham

Erosion by Jorie Graham


Happy Reading and Writing!