The twenty-sixth Moon Prize on today's full moon goes to Lisa Marguerite Mora's exquisite poem "Illuminated Manuscript."
by Lisa Marguerite Mora
Cracked face of a clock frozen
to the wrong minute,
outside a restless grimy tide washes
through shallow footprints
now they are puddles, and sand crabs
scrabble for sustenance.
I could be like them lost in the certainty
of sand and oxygen and angry
wayward waves. They comprise the universe --
excoriating wrench and rhythm, yes I could be lost
to the riptide's deadly yank, my limbs, my head lolling, no longer
It would be easy.
But recently there is this other (me) that can frame
the whole scene and all its visceral misery
within a border of twined flowers as in an illuminated
the page laden
between my fingers.
It is but one page.
Where do I suspend disbelief?
* * * * *
"Illuminated Manuscript" was originally published in a slightly different form in Literary Landscapes, a publication of the Greater Los Angeles Writers Society.
Lisa Marguerite Mora has had work published in Rattle, ONTHEBUS, Rebelle Society, The Urban Howl, Cultural Weekly, Public Poetry Series, Literary Mama, and California Quarterly, among many others, including a Blue Mountain Arts Poetry Prize and in 2017 tied First Place for Dandelion Press Micro Fiction Contest. Recently she has finished a first novel and is at work on her second. Lisa studied with author Carolyn See at UCLA where she received a Bachelors in English with a Creative Writing Emphasis. A story editor and consultant, she also conducts creative writing workshops in the Los Angeles area.