Auto Portraiture: The Artist at the Scene
by Kelli Allen
About Kelli Allen
Kelli Allen is an award-winning poet, editor, and scholar. Her poetry and fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in Puerto del Sol, Echo Ink Review, Poetry Quarterly, Fjords, Abridged, Other Poetry,Lyre Lyre, The Blue Sofa Review, WomenArts Quarterly, The Caper Review, It Has Come to This: Poets of the Great Mother Conference, Foliate Oak, Greatest Lakes Review, Lugh Review (where she was the featured author), Blackmail Press, The Chaffy Review, Euphony and elsewhere. She has been the featured poet for Desperanto Press's segment "Tea With George" for September 2011. Her fiction has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and she was a finalist for the 2011 Rebecca Lard Award. She is the author of two chapbooks (Applied Cryptography; Picturing What Breaks) and has served as the Managing Editor of Natural Bridge. She is also the founder of the Graduate Writers Reading Series for the University of Missouri St. Louis. She holds an MFA in Poetry from the University of Missouri St. Louis. She is currently an Adjunct Professor of English at Lindenwood University and Florissant Valley. Allen gives readings and teaches workshops throughout the US. Her full-length poetry collection, Otherwise, Soft White Ash, is forthcoming from Fjords New Book Series October of 2012.
Coils of it appear in the shallow grass and he is satisfied with the rough pattern, though wishes the egg-blue loops shone brighter. Dragging the length from abdomen to street to lawn is exhausting, though rewarding in such a necessary scene. He notices that there should be more glass. Somehow it flew farther out, embedding itself as lace, ice, vertical weeds cut clear, peppering instead on infesting the scalp and stomach, now thorax hard, gleaming as it bloats, fills, stretches. He is compelled to rearrange both sets of their knees, forming angles where violet and cobalt blooms catch the early light exposed as his lens noses further through the neck of oak. Each patella strains to remain smooth, bulbs instead into variations
of perfect edema. The skin splits, coagulation like a burst fruit spilled first onto table, then dropping in a minor collision into lipstick thick glops forming stars and wicks on ruined steel and plastic.