Pleiades Pentimento

We were three bright stars,
three sisters, no brother,
never far from our earth mother,
an open star cluster
until I discovered the universe,
my comet tail burning through space.

Now, middle-aged Pleiades,
we are fading stars and sisterhood is nebulous
in the stubborn constellation of Taurus.
No longer a pole star in your lives,
I’m just a white dwarf,
a faint glimmer in the night sky.

But look closely and you’ll see
that the star you wish on every night is me.

Kim M. Russell, 2018

Image result for art and illustrations of Pleiades and falling stars
Witold Pruszkowski, Falling Star, 1884, image found on Pinterest

My response to dVerse Poets Pub Tuesday Poetics: Pentimento, also linked to Imaginary Garden with Real Toads Tuesday Platform

Amaya, our host this Tuesday, tells us that she is fascinated by the concept of the pentimento, which in art is an alteration to a work as evidenced by traces of a previous work, showing that the artist has changed his/her mind. She has shared a famous example of the hidden woman’s face in the bent neck of Pablo Picasso’s ‘The Old Guitarist’.

Amaya has challenged us to write a poem in any form about a time (specifically or abstractly) we changed our mind. Keep in mind that pentimento in Italian means ‘repentance’, so a change for the greater good is what we’re going for, not one resulting in regret or even greater remorse. She has suggested one method of doing so by going back and reading something we wrote years ago to see if it’s something we would be ready to publish today. I have revisited a poem I wrote and posted in 2016.


44 thoughts on “Pleiades Pentimento

  1. I LOVE this Kim. And even before your reply to Bjorn, I FELT that this was a poem about a family, sisters with no brother….the mother….and the one breaking away into the universe…possible estrangement but the knowledge that the love is always there. At least, that’s how I read it…Just a wonderful write and the references to the solar world are so well weaved here.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The “sisterhood is nebulous” blew me away because it is a wonderful choice of words here but also because I experience it in my own life. I think this is a beautiful poem about familial love and how there is no separation even with the cosmos pulling us apart. And, I’m glad you tried the looking back on an old piece of writing technique. I wasn’t so brave;)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I felt you were writing about a real life relationship before i scrolled down the comments section. I sensed wanting to be an identity not just as sisters but individual too. but being there when the other needed sisterly magic.

    Liked by 1 person

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