KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 11: Spring 2019
Poem: 150 words


by Roy Beckemeyer

The architect pictures it rising 
abruptly—a humpback whale 
broaching rolling Pacific waves—
a nascent volcano built upon 
the molten basalt 
of Old Testament prophets—

“It should be iconic, 
come with cornices, 
ionic columns, enfilades,” 
he says. “It should buttress 
our beliefs, accept the blue 
tint of any one of a thousand 
days seen from balustrades, 
porticos, mansard roofs.” 

“I will bind up board and batten, 
link loggia with lintel, match 
and mix dormers, pilasters, 
sacristies and fenestrations 
with love, with faith.” 

“I will arch my arms, outline bold 
basilicas, monoliths to monotheism, 
let in the light through clerestory, 
vault, transom—slit the light with mullions, 
facet it with muntins.” 

“I will become arcuate, volute, pendentive. 
I will draw with try-square, with compass; 
ink onto vellum saintly names: Narthex. 
Chancel. Nave.” 

“I will lift to luminance, with corbeled 
gestures and archivolt soaring, 
every man’s, every child’s, 
every woman’s soul.” 



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