Melinda B Hipple Author

Camera Body

Even without a camera in my hands I walk with a photographer's eye, notice some piece of chaff that flutters against the wind— butterfly a flake of leaf not quite the right shade of green— katydid constant motion in the nettles on a still day— bees I also walk to listen with a photographer's ear, to hear the quiet chuck of a mother robin at attention— fledgling a steady whee rippling the air at the water's surface— spring peeper the unfamiliar chirp of a sparrow in pain— broken wing And when a novice says you must have a really good camera, I glance at my empty hands and say, yes, yes, I do. (Published - Watershed 2016)

Monarch

She hangs weary at the browning edge of the echinacea garden, her proboscis curled in place, too tired to eat. She has been battered by wind, scarred by one narrow escape after another. My hands—scarred and darkening— steady the lens, pause as I look for her best side. She has no best side. Glamor shots become documentary. I wonder how old I would be in butterfly years. (Published - Watershed 2014)

Silver Anniversary

Whole, the swan was pretty in a dime-store kitsch sort of way. Oh, but it was beautiful when it caught fire— pink netting succumbing to the chemistry of anger, flaming down to its wire bones. (Published - Watershed 2016)

Guernica

Oil on canvas, by Pablo Picasso 1937 In this dance macabre, a bull, a horse close the distance from horn to heart, spill gray hope upon Basque soil. A beautiful brushstroke no longer shakes us from the glorified gore of broken blades and severed limbs. These dagger tongues scream of shifting dimensions, of space out of time, of a dark aftermath where we will ride the chaos on our knees. And we will ride without surrender for as long as Man finds honor in the death of children. (Published - Pirene's Fountain 2014)