Jennifer Glancy

Gravity and Levity

All things, they thought, were goaded by desire
to fall or rise. In water and in earth
they sensed a yearning for the lowest berth,
an eagerness for sinking. But fire
climbed, aspiring to fuse with sparks above.
How else could they explain ascent of flame
through weightless atmosphere except to claim
that fire was upward drawn by the wick of love?
The world seemed heavy, then, the day they learned
that love did not inspire candles to burn.
To breathe felt burdensome. A new despair
descended on their hearts, a hot concern
that gravity might capture even prayer,
defeated by the awful weight of air.

Again Peter Denied It
(On John 18:10-11 and 18:25-27)

Just beyond the fiery circle, his fear
red hot, he hardened himself to feel as brave
as he had just hours before when he rushed a slave,
pathetic fellow who howled as he lost an ear.
Shuddering, he struggled to regain control.
But there in the dark of the high priest's yard
he glimpsed his victim, the slave somehow unscarred,
staring at him with a knowing look. Still whole.
Or so he believed at first, the man he spied
not Malchus but his kin. Later it was claimed
that Jesus healed the slave, but Peter knew
of unsalved damage. Nothing could undo
that moment he had joyed in blood that stained
with savagery that could not be denied.


Jennifer A. Glancy is professor of Religious Studies at Le Moyne College in Syracuse, NY. Her previous publications include Slavery in Early Christianity and Corporal Knowledge: Early Christian Bodies (both published by Oxford University Press). Obsessions evident in those works surface in her poetry as well.


Deborah Arnold
Sylvia Ashby
Meredith Bergmann
Carol Dorf
Melanie Figg
Sophia Galifianakis
Nicole Caruso Garcia
Jennifer Glancy
Dolores Hayden
Kjerstin Kauffman
Katrina Kostro
Michele Leavitt
Susan McLean
Ann Michael
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Samantha Pious
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Chelsea Woodard (Featured Poet)
Marly Youmans


Jenna Le, Anne-Marie Thompson, and Chelsea Woodard join editor Kim Bridgford at the tenth-anniversary Mezzo Cammin panel at the Poetry by the Sea conference.

Sophia Galifianakis was the recipient of the Mezzo Cammin scholarship.

Corpus VI was formed in 2003, when six women figurative painters, who studied together at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, united to curate, exhibit and present our work to the public on our own terms, and launch our artistic careers. The name was chosen because it reflected our shared commitment to figurative representation. Clarity Haynes, Elena Peteva, and Suzanne Schireson were three of the founding members of the group, which organized an inaugural, self-titled show at Philadelphia's Highwire Gallery in the spring of 2005. The exhibition essay was written by Jeffrey Carr, Dean of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. The exhibition was very well-attended and reviewed in several art publications.

The experience of working together to successfully realize this exhibition, as well as the continuous dialogue and exchange of ideas on contemporary figuration, has proven to be greatly valuable to us. Ten years after graduating from PAFA, as our careers have taken us to different locations across the United States, three of the original members, Clarity Haynes, Suzanne Schireson, and Elena Peteva, have come together to reinvent the collective by inviting one artist each to be part of this exhibition that will begin at the New Bedford Art Museum in fall 2015 and travel to other institutions.

Holly Trostle Brigham, Stacy Latt Savage and Laurie Kaplowitz are professional figurative artists, whose strong artistic visions enrich the collective's range and explorations of contemporary representation. We are excited at the prospect of seeing our work all together in new configurations, creating new dialogues. Holly Brigham creates imaginative, narrative watercolors, which tell a feminist story, inserting her artistic persona into art historical narratives and mythologies. Laurie Kaplowitz uses textured paint to create personages that hint at the soul within, alluding to rituals of marking, scarring and adorning the body as an integral part of our human identity and presentation. Stacy Latt Savage combines figurative elements with fabricated structures and shapes to create objects that capture what it looks like to feel human and the complexities of our human condition. Clarity Haynes casts new light on ideas of beauty, femininity and embodiment through her realistic painted portraits of the female torso. Elena Peteva creates allegorical representations of our individual and social states through the human figure and subtle, charged, incomplete signs that invite the viewer's attempt for interpretation. Suzanne Schireson is influenced by her great-grandfather's autobiography as an early plastic surgeon and her paintings examine contradictions surrounding the birth of cosmetic surgery, such as the power to heal and the fostering of insecurity.
32 Poems
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