By Cynthia West
“To read a poem by Cynthia West is to embark on a wild ride--at any moment we may plunge or soar or dance into some new dimension of experience. Like all essential art, these poems reach toward the becoming world, bringing rain to the waste land, calling our feet to the home road.” --Jay Udall, author of "Home in the Dark"
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Cynthia West says, “I follow a poem’s tracks. Each nerve awake, I delve beneath the obvious, turning unnecessary remnants into windows with views to those secrets closer than thought. If I happen upon flotsam discarded on the riverbank, I carefully arrange it into a shrine for seekers to enter. An ordinary face can open to reveal clouds waiting the chance to loose rain on desert so fruit will come this year. Green curving words can be cajoled to form a tunnel into the growth cycle and how all life interweaves.
“Starting with random lines, I dream my way into their momentum, let them lead me out of the house into my memory yard. They direct me to the spot where I buried a sparrow when I was eight. Suddenly the ground is significant from receiving the bird’s death. I stand listening and looking. Familiar leaves and grass are not the same. The spent heap of feathers in my small hand forms into free flying verse.
“My poems are rituals. By ritual I mean precise machines, airplanes, which convey the traveler from one place to another. Rainbringer is a road map for seekers, a trail marker for the emptied ones. Field notes, advice and anecdotes entertain along the way. The lilies I offer you have been gathered climbing the mountains, swimming the sea and bringing the rain."
Well known for her visionary realist paintings, Cynthia West is also skilled in poetry, photography, digital imaging, book arts and pottery. Her home, where she has lived for thirty years with her husband and family, is a renowned healing center, as well as her studio and gallery. Many who travel great distances to receive treatments find refuge in her remarkable art and gardens.
West painted for nineteen years in a studio on the plaza in Santa Fe. Her works exhibit widely and in collections all over the world. She is the author of two previous books of poetry: "For Beauty Way" and "1000 Stone Buddhas," both from Inked Wingbeat.
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