Z is for Zenography

zenography: noun – the study of the planet Jupiter

Today’s NaPoWriMo prompt  was to write a poem that engages with a strange and fascinating fact. It says to take a cue from Borges. I tried to read Ficciones as part of Summer Reading Bingo last Summer, but had trouble getting into the stories. Maybe I’ll try again this Summer.

jupiter_giantredeye1-580x385

Image of Jupiter’s Giant Red Spot, taken on March 5th, 1979. Credit: NASA GSFC/NASA/JPL

 

The Reliquary for the Miraculous

Admiring your reliquary,
a hand in pose to bless,

I imagine the virgin hovering;
A congestion of moons encircling
the widened waist, if any more
dense, would grow smaller

I expect your holy death, your martyrdom
severe and righteous, but my work
becomes zenography; observing the untouchable;
coming to conclusions from afar

Your works are panegyrics to emperors
documentation of political events
You married the daughter of an emperor
and through sycophantic acclamations
rose in wealth and rank

Admiring your reliquary, I ponder
the moment a person recognizes her true nature
Its riveted repairs testify to eternal renewal
A hollow shell in saintly repose

 

This poem was inspired by:

Just Looking: Essays on Art by John Updike

Borges lectures from openculture.com

40 interesting Jupiter facts from factslegend.org

Saint Sidonius from Wikipedia

Want to read more? You may want to take a look at:

The Secrets of Jupiter (Planets) by Thomas K. Adamson

The Letters of Sidonius: [Oxford Library Of Translations]; Volume 2

The Trophies of the Martyrs: An Art Historical Study of Early Christian Silver Reliquaries (Oxford Studies in Byzantium) by Galit Noga-Banai

Happy Reading and Writing!

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