Painting by Eric Sorensen

by Kevin Casey

Love Triangle Sonnet

In your hotel room, you slide the curtain rings
aside like abacus beads, imagining
she sees the same waxing moon tacked
to the sapphire — the vertex of a triangle
formed by her, the moon, and you.
And you could judge your longing, the distance
back to her, if the triangle was right.
But there’s no hypotenuse: Pythagoras
won’t help when affairs have grown so acute.
Somewhere across these midnight latitudes
must be an answer to the heart’s proposition —
a formula to explain these intervals,
these tangent lines that only seem to meet
when they kiss the curve of the moon.


A New Language

I often think of that autumn, recalled
as if by rote: our senior year’s first term
washed in rain, fallen oak leaves slicked together
in the dark and somber courtyard outside
our French classroom. Most of us had mastered
declensions in the previous summer’s heat,
taught ourselves the nuances of gender
and number in the language of our new bodies.

But that semester we studied conjugation
and possession, and everything grew confused.
You sat in front of me, fresh lip gloss
and highlights in your hair — “désirer,” to want.
And I made you laugh all during lunch,
though you never returned the note I tucked
into your textbook — “Aimer,” to like or to love,
depending on the context. When I saw you
waiting by his locker, the lesson fell
into focus, and childhood’s “nous somme,” we are
diverged in a moment and forever
into “je suis,” I am, and “ils sont,” they are.



About the painter: Eric Sorensen is a medical student and artist who loves painting, drawing, and photography. After college he studied painting in San Francisco where he worked closely with leading artists in the Bay Area. Eric enjoys both figurative and abstract work. Image: Painting, acrylic medium and fabric dye on panel (2014), part of a series exploring the movement of translucent colors.