Illustration for Bushwick Daily by Jessica Prusa.

Thirteen Ways of Looking at the Sun

by Allison Chopin

“I do not know which to prefer,

The beauty of inflections

Or the beauty of innuendoes,

The blackbird whistling

Or just after.”

-Wallace Stevens


Out of wispy dawn

In early grey hours

Emerges the sun.


I am the waiting dew

In the weeds and the dirt

As the sun soothes my face.


Sun melts snow;

Liquid collects

In puddles and joins streams

In spring.

Waters trickle south

And the rivers rise.


A man and a woman

Are one.

The earth and the water

Are one.

The earth and the water and the sun

Are one.


Flowers lift their heads.

Rays of sun strike

Viridian leaves

And cells gather up light

By the barrel.

I reach up to the sky

And pull down nothing

But clouds.


Meanwhile, roots dig deep

Away from the sun,

Drink in water

And minerals from the

Bowels of the brown earth.

They’re feeding the food chain too.


I retreat to the shade

And shield my face

From stinging ultraviolet rays.

I slather lotion on sun-freckled skin.


The grass works all day,

Sun and soil turn to sugar.

Then the world spins on

And hides the light ‘til morning.


Dappled cattle graze blades of grass

To munch on solar calories.

Their keepers

Are farming the sun.


Once you were in love with

A blonde boy they called Sunshine

But he left you for a violin.

He didn’t forget you.


Withered eyes of poets

And song,

Why do you prefer

A thunderstorm

In the black of midnight

To the sun?


I compromise.

I live for days

When it’s drizzling

But the sun still shines.


It was morning.

It had rained

And we didn’t want to wake.

The sun’s faint laughter

Peeked through fraying curtains

And brushed my cheek.



Allison N. Chopin is a native of the Deep South who now lives in Greenpoint. She’s a magazine assistant and freelance writer, and in addition to writing poetry, she is currently working on a novel about vampire romance and time travel.

Jessica Prusa is an artist living in Bushwick. Check out her Tumblr and website to see more of her work.