In iridescent, intimate lines, Carol Moldaw’s Beauty Refracted is a stunning tapestry of the ways we are marked by time. From the “unstaunchable grief” of losing a parent to the experience of raising a child through adolescence, Moldaw peels back the veil of the everyday to discover the metaphysical passions hidden underneath.
“Dream Loop #2” from Beauty Refracted:
hold palms up to opposite sides of glass—
even without touch, seeing you comforts.
We, the imprisoned; you, free to go,
your sentence commuted, the terms no longer
a source of agony, tedium, despair, joy, hope
or spite. All crimes absolved, death
its own rehabilitation. This time the setting
is a crowded beach, a grilled burger
in your hand. Are you all of nineteen?
Or thirty-five, an image from childhood.
Joy radiates out of your eyes.
I too am elated, though with no chance
to discuss the dilemmas that vex me—
your detachment not unloving or cold
but a state few of us living attain.