BY: R. S. Stewart

The shade of a background
is vital. It compliments
more than the foreground
and the middle distance
together, illustrating little
but itself. Such is the colorful nature
of deception when it draws
too finely upon a single feature,
refusing assistance from the samples
often labeled as surplus.

Devotion to detail,
as essential as the unintentional brush
against the border,
fills in the needed freedom
to wander dazed by common color
before backgrounds become
the blaze of remembrance
of the sunrise shade in the pool
of perception, offered
by lights so vital.

R. S. Stewart lives in his native western Oregon. Formerly he taught English at Christopher Newport College (now University) of the College of William and Mary in Virginia, where he also founded the college theater, directing ten plays during the first two seasons. Three of his own plays have received staged readings at Oregon regional theaters. His poetry has been published in many journals in the U. S. and Europe, among them San Jose Studies; Blue Unicorn; Able Muse; The Raintown Review; Canary; Poetry Salzburg Review; 2 Bridges Review; The Same; Serving House Journal; Avatar Review; The Journal; Pif Magazine; Ink, Sweat & Tears; and Brittle Star.