ONE POEM – Brandon Marlon

Image: William Kentridge, Learning the Flute, 2003

Brandon Marlon is a writer from Ottawa, Canada. He received his B.A. in Drama & English from the University of Toronto and his M.A. in English from the University of Victoria. His poetry was awarded the Harry Hoyt Lacey Prize in Poetry (Fall 2015), and his writing has been published in 200+ publications in 27 countries. Find his work at


Well Seen

Shutter blades nictate for a fraction
of a second to capture the stelliform aura
emitted by midday’s orb, though the artiste
(partnering with light) prefers shooting
at dawn or dusk when soft glows
allow images to sing and pop, going beyond
the obvious, transcending the moment,
slowing time to a standstill till it freezes.

Even when thunder peals and lightning bolts
against ground, out come the lenses steady in hand
to reach out and grab displayed majesty merely
a few clicks away, devoured by the aperture
then impressed on a hypersensitive sensor
that bears no grudges but pilfers at whim.

For the compositionally inclined, top of mind
are leading and horizontal lines, thirds’ rule,
field’s depth, blurred backgrounds, framing,
layering, verticals, pans, shadows, reflections,
and above all keeping things surprising or at least
interesting for the sake of envisioned viewers
with cropped attention spans and curiosity deficits.

Try as one might, at the end of the day it’s night
and only the veteran can snag visuals in low light
of low-key denizens under darkness’ cloak,
figures afoot and creatures creeping,
away from prying eyes save the undetected glass
ensnaring from afar without assent or remorse,
ever intent on witnessing the dance of life.

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