There are no lines in nature, only areas of color, one against another.

             – Edouard Manet

& then there is idolatry,

reclining on a bolster


Titian had the grace, 

Manet the raw sexuality

& the anguish of the patrons:

A servant offers 

her flowers. She lies 

as if Venus, the bed is piled 

with cushions, sheets, a tapestry 

& all things soft 

& white 

& not always clean 

like her body, sold 

to the highest bidder with 

the biggest dick.

Olympia reclines, nude & staring 

as if to quote Nicki Minaj: Back to basics, bitch 

I been hot since Asics 

& I’m tighter than face lifts, 

flier than spaceships.

Her skin is white, 

her nipples barely pink, 

the sheets are white, the servant 

is black, but dressed in white. 

Even the flowers are white, wrapped in white paper.


Artwork © Ira Joel Haber

Artwork © Ira Joel Haber


Christina M. Sparks is a recent graduate of Carlow University, where she studied poetry under Jan Beatty. She was awarded the 2012 Award for Excellence in Creative Writing, and was awarded the Marilyn P. Donnelly poetry award Honorable Mention. Christina has had work published in Chapter & Verse a section in the City Paper online and in an anthology by Waid Books. She is currently earning her MFA in poetry from Pacific Lutheran University, where she participates in the Mount Rainier Writers Workshop.

Ira Joel Haber was born and lives in Brooklyn. He is a sculptor, painter, book dealer, photographer and teacher. His work has been seen in numerous group shows both in USA and Europe and he has had 9 one man shows including several retrospectives of his sculpture. His work is in the collections of The Whitney Museum Of American Art, New York University, The Guggenheim Museum, The Hirshhorn Museum and The Albright-Knox Art Gallery. Since 2007 His paintings, drawings, photographs and collages have been published in over 160 on line and print magazines. He has received three National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, two Pollock-Krasner grants, the Adolph Gottlieb Foundation grant and, in 2010, he received a grant from Artists’ Fellowship Inc. He currently teaches art to retired public school teachers at The United Federation of Teachers program in Brooklyn.