Lying Awake. Details

The first and last lithograph in the series incorporates text, taken from the notebooks, in and over the image. I add the full poems.


Harvest me.

When I'm dead or dying,

harvest me.

Like a peasant

that picks the tubers

from a dry patch of land.

Plunder me and give me to the poor.

To the drunks and the addicts

the liver, the kidneys.

Peel back the skin and

gather the tissues.

Scoop out my heart

and collect all my bones.

The lame will be walking

the blind will see.

But don’t touch my soul.

Promise you won’t touch my soul.

I want it set free,

released from its tethers.

By the time that

I am dead or dying

my soul will be ready for flight.

                             Herlinde Spahr


Don't think that the heavens don't look down on us,

a world of roots, of girth, the apple's downward fall.

They wait and wait and listen with care,

so rare is the sound that travels up high.

Like the diver on his springboard

bearing down with all his weight

to become weightless, breathless at the apex,

a soul of muscle in thin air.

The gods don't know how close we've come.

They only hear the quivering board,

the splash when bodies

come back down to earth.

Herlinde Spahr