Vacant Seats

We used to
drive down
to a park bench
near the edge
of the Gulf.
We’d sit
in the darkness
for hours,
and laughing.
The lights
on Clearwater Beach
in front of us
like stars.
The water
stretched out
for miles
and birds
over our heads.
There was a
and a peace
to it all.
I would
reach over
and hold
her small,
pale hand.
It seemed like
could stop us.
I drive past
that bench
now and then.
It’s always
like it’s waiting
for us
to come back.


R.J. Zeman is a poet from Dunedin, Florida.

Art can illuminate even the most elusive and difficult to comprehend ideas. Visual rules and tightly codified visual metaphors help scientists communicate complex ideas mostly amongst themselves, but they can also become barriers to new ideas and insights. Dr. Regina Valluzzi’s images are abstracted and diverged from the typical rules and symbols of scientific illustration and visualization; they provide an accessible window into the world of science for both scientists and non-scientists.