Friday, September 21, 2007


Being red is the color of a white sun where it lingers
on an arm. Color of time lost in sparks, of space lost
inside dance. Red of walks by the railroad in the flush
of youth, while our steps released the squeaks
of shoots reaching for the light. Scarlet of sin, crimson
of fresh blood, ruby and garnet of the jewel bed,
early sunshine, vestiges of the late sun as it turns
green and disappears. Be calm. Do not give in
to the rabid red throat of age. In a red world, imprint
the valentine and blush of romance for the dark.
It has come. You will not be this quick-to-redden
forever. You will be green again, again and again.
--Marvin Bell, "Mars Being Red"

The ruby preserved its owner's house or vineyard from lightning, tempest, and worms if the former were touched by it. It was also a disinfectant and preventive of infectious diseases. Bruised in water it relieved weakness of the eyes, and cured liver complaints.
--Marbodus, writing in the latter part of the 11th century

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