Not A Believer

Written for:  dVerse Poets Pub - Poetics:  Let Your Words
Be your Paintbrush!  (posted by Lillian)

"In February 2018, I became acquainted with the often surreal art of Catrin Welz-Stein. She studied graphic design in Germany and then worked for several firms. On her own time, she began to experiment with mixed media, collages, paintings on canvas and digital art. Her process to create her art? She searches for license-free images and scours old books and magazines. She breaks images into pieces and then weaves them together with other images to create something entirely new. She is especially interested in folklore, fairy tales, surrealism, medieval times and Jugendstil (Art Noveau)."

"Below are four of her images. I have deliberately left off the titles so you will free-associate with them. Please select one of these images, include it with your post, and be sure to give credit to Catrin Welz-Stein with a link to her website You may write an ekphrastic poem in the purest sense, describing the image; or you may simply be motivated by the image and, letting it stir your imagination, write a poem that in some way, connects to the image."

Catrin Welz-Stein
Bird of the bulging
eye, a disbeliever
in magic, allows
the tiny top-hatted
gentlemen to ride
on his rear, fearing
he may fall off.
But surely that metal
key will be the force
to hold him steady.
Although a skeptic,
the bird does not wish
to see beyond that
strange keyhole, if
indeed the key even
fits.  This is a new
world.  What if it is
as disappointing 
as the other?  Bird
of the bulging eye
prefers to stick with 
what he knows.    

About purplepeninportland

I am a freelance poet, born and bred in Brooklyn, New York. I live with my husband, John, and two charming rescue dogs–Marion Miller and Murphy. We spent eight lovely years in Portland, OR, but are now back in New York. My goal is to create and share poetry with others who write, or simply enjoy reading poetry. I hope to touch a nerve in you, and feel your sparks as well.
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30 Responses to Not A Believer

  1. Zack and Zelda says:

    This is fabulous, I was so intrigued by the title…and the whole piece wow’d me 🙂


  2. Lucy says:

    You delved into the fantasy genre here (which is awesome), and the imagery you describe from the portrait is amazing. Stunning verse, as always. ❤ ❤ I enjoyed reading this piece.


  3. msjadeli says:

    I like your perspective — seer from the bulging eye — on this one, Sara.


  4. Ingrid says:

    ‘It’s better the devil you know’ I guess. Poor bird, though I can understand his worrying ‘What if it is
    as disappointing/as the other?’ when there are birds dropping out of the sky during migration.


  5. lillian says:

    Love that you’re writing from the perspective of the bird here….and then make it so vivid as bird of the bulging eye! Ah yes…..shall we use the key to open the portal, hoping there is a better world on the other side? I’m reminded of the old adage “the grass is always greener on the other side” – We THINK others have it better, that their world is better than ours….but we never know until we step over. Really enjoyed this read.


  6. rothpoetry says:

    Very nice poem Sara… the view through the key hole is a great concept… That is where we are now holding the key to our future… not sure if it will be what we hope.. wanting things to stay in a comfortable place! Well done!


  7. I’d not noticed how emphasised the bird’s eye was previously. It creates a lovely juxtaposition with your poem, where the bird doesn’t wish to see more than it does already, despite sight being such a prominent feature in the art.


  8. robtkistner says:

    The prompt image you chose was very well expressed Sara, fine writing. I chose same image, plus her sorceress image for a 2nd poem. I really like these Welz-Stein artworks.


  9. It is often healthy to be skeptical… there is probably a marmalade cat behind the locked moon


  10. Beverly Crawford says:

    Perhaps the “bird with bulging eye” carries the secrets of the universe, proud to carry the key-bearer!


  11. lynn__ says:

    Love how you focused on the bulge-eyed bird, Sara! I wrote to this same image 🙂


  12. “Bird of the bulging eye” — that’s intriguing! Also, now I can’t un-see that eye, which I hadn’t really noticed before.


  13. sanaarizvi says:

    Love the phrase; “Bird of the bulging eye,” …💝 and the imagery that follows. I think one needs to find a balance between the magical and realistic realm 🙂


  14. Dora says:

    How mystical, and how interesting that it’s the bird that keeps its rational hat on! Marvelously done.


  15. memadtwo says:

    Sometime skepticism is the best approach. (K)


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