Sep 05

[Imagine Everything at Once]

by Justin Rigamonti

Imagine everything at once. Every moment of your life, every sound and scene you’ve lived through, all happening together, layered over each other into one enveloping frame.

The sound would be a wall of thunder. The color would be totality, pure black. Imagine the horror, and then the growing consolation, of this cocoon, its roaring darkness.

Every second of sensation unmoored from the arrow, like beads pulled off their string. Free of hierarchy, they merge into each other, they’re all one good black breath.

And then, unbound, the beads of time begin to arrange themselves according to another law. While some stay layered in the velvet darkness, others rolls toward your consciousness, their true north, flickering. One bead in particular shines brighter, closer than the rest.

Reach out to it. Hold your face to its clear glass. Tell me where you are.



Justin Rigamonti teaches college writing courses in Portland, Oregon, and co-directs a literary non-profit called Poetry Press Week. His poetry has been published in The Threepenny Review, The Burnside Review, and Zócalo Public Square

Art by Art Editor, Michelle Johnsen

Michelle Johnsen (art editor) is a nature and portrait photographer in Lancaster, PA, as well as an amateur herbalist and naturalist. Her work has been featured by It’s Modern Art, Susquehanna Style magazine, Permaculture Activist magazine,, EarthFirst! Journal, Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative, and used as album art for Grandma Shake!, Anna & Elizabeth, and Liz Fulmer Music. Michelle’s photos have also been stolen by AP,, The Daily Mail, and Lancaster Newspapers. You can contact her at mjphoto717 [at]