News,  Saturday Poetry

Mobile Art Saturday Poetry – The Flame Tree by Evelyn Flores

This weeks Saturday Poetry, matched with mobile photography/art is entitled The Flame Tree by Evelyn Flores.  She is an Indigenous CHamoru poet and the co-editor of Indigenous Literatures from Micronesia (University of Hawaiʻi Press, 2019).

“As it had been for the rest of the world, it had been a year of death and dying for us in the wake of the virus. On an island like Guåhan where families are connected in many different ways, we walked about in a state of shock that this could be happening. Then it was that my neighbor leaning across the fence talked about poisoning the flame tree. Although it made sense, something inside resisted. But it was done. Dying and living came together as I watched that courageous tree refuse to die. We would go on. The beautiful would insist. That’s when the poem came.” She wrote about this poem.

I have matched mobile art by @vickieiphoto52 entitled ‘Upside Down Tree’ with this poem. To view her Instagram feed, please go here.

If you would like to be featured in our Saturday Poetry section, please ensure you include the hashtag #theappwhisperer to any images posted to Instagram. This will mean we will be able to consider it.

To view the others we have published in this section, go here.

via Poets.org

The Flame Tree by Evelyn Flores

My neighbor has decided to poison the flame tree.
He is right, of course.
The tree is over 20 years old, huge, spreading,
and the termites have worn jagged roads clear to its top.
It’s clearly a danger
tilting toward our house—
some fickle wind
my neighbor says could blow it over. 

Every fañomnåkan, it sends out its bursts of orange blossoms;
it blooms and blooms and blooms relentlessly,
the flares it sends shooting out into space
more stunning than fireworks 
through the window

where my mother
riveted to a bed, doomed by her body to a colorless spot, 
gazes out, her head on a pillow—
might have seemed like forever to her who used to climb green mountain sides—
and watches that tree full of sparrows
flitting here and there
and the outlandish blazing petals
steadfastly singing against the blue sky.

My neighbor, true to his word,
injected a poisonous brew bought at Home Depot into the trunk of the tree,
the toxic river traveling up up up following the termite trails to the heart 
of the fire.

He is right, of course.

The tree came back the following year,
its clusters unflinchingly parading their bursts of rebellious orange.
But the poison had done its work—
see, where there was a canopy of flames
there are now just a handful here and there,
one spray in particular desperately
reaching out 
like a fist full of beauty 
to the window

where she 
used to watch for its return.


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Joanne Carter, creator of the world’s most popular mobile photography and art website— TheAppWhisperer.com— TheAppWhisperer platform has been a pivotal cyberspace for mobile artists of all abilities to learn about, to explore, to celebrate and to share mobile artworks. Joanne’s compassion, inclusivity, and humility are hallmarks in all that she does, and is particularly evident in the platform she has built. In her words, “We all have the potential to remove ourselves from the centre of any circle and to expand a sphere of compassion outward; to include everyone interested in mobile art, ensuring every artist is within reach”, she has said. Promotion of mobile artists and the art form as a primary medium in today’s art world, has become her life’s focus. She has presented lectures bolstering mobile artists and their art from as far away as the Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea to closer to her home in the UK at Focus on Imaging. Her experience as a jurist for mobile art competitions includes: Portugal, Canada, US, S Korea, UK and Italy. And her travels pioneering the breadth of mobile art includes key events in: Frankfurt, Naples, Amalfi Coast, Paris, Brazil, London. Pioneering the world’s first mobile art online gallery - TheAppWhispererPrintSales.com has extended her reach even further, shipping from London, UK to clients in the US, Europe and The Far East to a global group of collectors looking for exclusive art to hang in their homes and offices. The online gallery specialises in prints for discerning collectors of unique, previously unseen signed limited edition art. Her journey towards becoming The App Whisperer, includes (but is not limited to) working for a paparazzi photo agency for several years and as a deputy editor for a photo print magazine. Her own freelance photographic journalistic work is also widely acclaimed. She has been published extensively both within the UK and the US in national and international titles. These include The Times, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Popular Photography & Imaging, dpreview, NikonPro, Which? and more recently with the BBC as a Contributor, Columnist at Vogue Italia and Contributing Editor at LensCulture. Her professional photography has also been widely exhibited throughout Europe, including Italy, Portugal and the UK. She is currently writing several books, all related to mobile art and is always open to requests for new commissions for either writing or photography projects or a combination of both. Please contact her at: [email protected]