Sylvia Plath (October 27, 1932 – February 11, 1963). Photographer Unknown


Death of a Messenger

A never-ending performance
Of the darkest night
Has its swan song
With vapid glee
The black curtain’s enormity
Comes down
To an ovation, withstanding
The joys of life
Culminating in pulpit suits
Hats and bourbon
Decent and indecent
Upright and lipstick
Face down and flat out
Clouds of camphor and hypocrisy
Waft through stale air
As ghosts in need
Slip through cracks
Empty-handed, giftless
Greeting Gods
On the other side of tomorrow


“I am terrified by this dark thing that sleeps in me.”
― Sylvia Plath, The Collected Poems

Sylvia Plath reading ‘
A Birthday Present * *


Copyright © 2018 Mia Pharaoh. All rights reserved.


The Understudy

Ellen Rogers Photography


The Understudy

Waiting for sleep to take hold
My mind circles like vultures
Canvassing for a carcass
I scribe myself in line and lifelines
Glossy black and blue
Over flat white: hesitant and anemic
I swing like a bladed pendulum
Between false certainty
And self-doubt while wondering
If I’m my own greatest creation
My own worst critic
Or my own careless curator
Stumbling in awkward curtsy
Trading secrets for currency


“The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”
― Sylvia Plath, The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath *


For more about photographer Ellen Rogers please click on the link to visit the wonderfully surreal world of Mr. Cake to see his post, Bewitched.

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Copyright © 2018 Mia Pharaoh. All rights reserved.


Venus de Milo

Photographer Sally Mann


Venus de Milo

Front and forward
In vintage light
Her alabaster skin
And sun-kissed hair
Glowed brighter than the rest
There’s no denying
Among the crowd
Of same-old, same-old
She stood out
At five, late afternoon
Poised with confidence
Obvious swag and personality
Born with provocative gesture
Shoulder thrown back with la-di-da motion
Hip turned out in told-you-so pivot
Brows tipped down
In thoughtful calculation
She was and always would be
The cat that swallowed the canary


“I like to make people a little uncomfortable. It encourages them to examine who they are and why they think the way they do.”
― Sally Mann

Video — “
Sally Mann *


Copyright © 2018 Mia Pharaoh. All rights reserved.


Fortieth Day

Francesca Woodman Untitled Rome 1977-78.  Perhaps it should be titled, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?”


Fortieth Day
100 Words

Thaw, the fifth and final season, follows in muffled white steps behind Winter. It wakes like a charging bull with a caustic rage, unleashing pent-up black thoughts, sullied emotions, and questions of sanity: leaving you fully exposed to blind spots told in epitaph. It’s the cruelest season with the chilling betrayal of your own frostbitten hands beating you down, down to nothing, down to less than nothing. When you realize you’ve had enough you find yourself channeling the iconic genius, Francesca Woodman hanging from the door casing before a final leap of faith into the unknown: leaving a void forevermore.


“The joy that isn’t shared dies young.”
― Anne Sexton

Video — “
ARTIST ROOM – Francesca Woodman * *


Copyright © 2018 Mia Pharaoh. All rights reserved.



Photographer Sarah Moon




With fragile ankles
We turn on pointed toe
Extricating ourselves
From the lukewarm rubble


“I can bear any pain as long as it has meaning.”
― Haruki Murakami, 1Q84


Sarah Blasko –Bird On A Wire”                         *      


Copyright © 2018 Mia Pharaoh. All rights reserved.



Photographer Erich Hartmann




Reduction, a man-made affliction: the queue that holds abundant room for cruel intentions and harsh realities. Snapshots of the transparent and apparent blanket everything with a blasé gesso malaise when properly prepared hushes questions of right, leaving blank stares as empty armless hugs, known as the huddle: an odd semblance of warmth. The Deplorables distinguished as righteous, the righteous disguised as deplorable share in the madness and madness: a never-ending role of one in the sameness.


“It’s sickening how The Machine treats its individual parts.”
— June Gloom, The Gray Zone


Balthazar –The Man Who Owns The Place”                         *      


Copyright © 2018 Mia Pharaoh. All rights reserved.


Gesture of Surrender

Au Revoir — Photograph by Mia Pharaoh


Gesture of Surrender

I collected
Dust as years
It served me well
A buffer
Protecting everything
Real or otherwise
A token


“Never say goodbye because goodbye means going away and going away means forgetting.”
― J. M. Barrie, Peter Pan

Oskar Schuster – “
Sedmikrásky                                                                              .* *


Copyright © 2018 Mia Pharaoh. All rights reserved.



Man Ray Self-portrait


100 Words

Ooh la la, this photo is to die for, even if I do say so myself. It’s all about you, you, you. What about me? You’re brilliant, a diamond in the rough, running circles around me while I clean a loaded gun with my right hand, count barbiturates with my left, wondering if I have time to swallow them all before the hammer hits the firing pin. Choking down dry pills, no water, coughing furiously I hit my forehead on the table, accidentally pulling the trigger, missed by the bullet, clarity arrives. Not to worry, I’m every shade of okay.


“I have been accused of being a joker. But the most successful art to me involves humor.”
― Man Ray

A Short film by Man Ray — “
Poison                                                               *


Copyright © 2018 Mia Pharaoh. All rights reserved.


Blind Orchid

Photographer — Katie Eleanor


Blind Orchid
100 Words

I am forever young and forever old, from everywhere and from nowhere, memories muddled and memories clear: so many and yet all too few. Yesterday, indiscernible from today or tomorrow, for where there is no time, there is no matter. I am akin to some wild thing that comes into bloom but once a year, hidden deep within the Woods of the Wounded Sparrow. The cruel irony, partners: decay and decadence, dance in frenzied quickstep to Rimsky-Korsakov’s, “Flight of the Bumblebee”, while onlookers: the moon and stars, rule over my endurance, I long to be found, recognized, yet not saved.


“I am a collection of dismantled almosts.”
― Anne Sexton, Anne Sexton: A Self-Portrait in Letters

Video – The poem, “
I Am, written by John Clare, read by Tom O’Bedlam.

Music — “Flight of the Bumblebee”, by Rimsky-Korsakov.        *           *            *


Half Nelson

Call Of Duty  — Artist Mitch Griffiths


Half Nelson

He was the unknowable
He was the ever shallow pool of liquid amber
He was the clink of ice, the red booths
He was the motels, the Murphy beds, the naps
He was the driver, never the talker
He was the ageless, the timeless
He was the smoothness of face, for it never moved
He was the invisible, yet he was the visible
He was the walking wounded
He was the wakeful dead


“The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.”
― G.K. Chesterton                                                                                                        

Video — “Mitch Griffiths, The Promised Land                                                      Frail

Original Post July 18, 2016